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UNP: Govt. Cannot Import Coconuts

Dec 28, 2010 10:04:36 AM - thesundayleader.lk

The UNP has said that the government could not import coconuts under the Plant Protection Act.

Following the steep increase in coconut prices, the government announced its decision to import coconuts from Kerala, India, to maintain local prices.

However, UNP parliamentarian Dr. Harsha De Silva has told the media that the coconut cultivation in India is affected by a disease called Kerala wilt.

The local coconut production has seen a drastic drop following the felling of about 300,000 coconut trees that were infected by a disease.

Dr. De Silva has said that the government has not amended the Plant Protection Act. He has expressed doubts on whether the disease that has affected the trees in India would affect the local plantations.<p>

According to Dr. De Silva, the government could import coconuts only for research purposes and with the approval by the Director General of Agriculture.

The government meanwhile has said that the coconut imports would be subjected to the regulations involved in importing plants.