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January 7, 2011

Sri Lanka to import onions from Pakistan

National

A
APP
January 7, 2011

COLOMBO: Sri Lanka is likely to follow India in importing onions from Pakistan as price of the crucial ingredient for curry hits 340 Sri Lankan rupee at the retail markets, a Colombo based newspaper reported on Wednesday.
According to the newspaper, the government slashed its import tax and took urgent measures to import onions from Pakistan. The price escalated due to a drop in onion harvest in Sri Lanka, the newspaper said.
India, too, is suffering from onion shortage and has put a ban on its exports, limiting prospects of easy imports from the close neighbour. The upcoming onion harvest in Sri Lanka is also reported to be lower than expectations.
In Kalpitiya, a major onion growing area of Sri Lanka, area under onion cultivation has dropped from 1800 hectares in the previous season to only 250 hectares in the current season, said a report from Sri Lanka’s Sinhala Radio Neth FM. Quoting farmers, it said, losses caused by floods and diseases have discouraged farmers. One US dollar is around 110 Sri Lankan rupees.

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