This was sequel to request made by the Government of Sri Lanka.
High Commissioner of India Gopal Baglaydelivered the keynote address at the event. Other speakers included, State Minister for Skill Development, Vocational Education, Research and Innovation Seetha Arambepola and Minister of State for Agriculture. ShasheendraRajapaksa. The press release said
“High Commissioner Baglay said that India would be happy to collaborate with Sri Lanka in its transition towards organic agriculture by providing capacity building training, sharing technical know-how, organizing exchange visits of experts and through research collaboration among institutions involved in organic farming. He also called for utilizing the vast Indian experience in this area for achieving food security for the people of Sri Lanka and suggested setting up an ‘Organic Centre of Excellence’ in Sri Lanka with Indian assistance. He asked bio fertilizer companies of both sides to explore prospects of forming Joint Ventures for manufacturing of bio fertilizers in Sri Lanka.
State Minister Seetha Arambepola called for greater interaction and collaboration from both sides in various aspects of organic agriculture. Highlighting the need of the Government of Sri Lanka to switch over to 100 percent Organic agriculture, State Minister Mr. ShasheendraRajapaksa expressed hope that India’s capabilities and expertise in the field would be beneficial to Sri Lanka. Appreciating the lead role taken by the High Commission in organizing such an interaction, the Ministers requested the High Commission to organize more such interactions in the future.
Dr. S. Anbalagan, CEO of Sikkim Organic Farming Development Agency shared strategies employed by Sikkim towards its successful transformation as the first State in the world to adopt 100 percent organic agriculture in 2016. Dr. Shiva Dhar, Principal Scientist, ICAR-Indian Agriculture Research Institute shared valuable insights on plants nutrient management for organic farming. Commercial interaction during the session comprised representation from Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Confederation of Indian Industries, and biofertilizer manufacturing firms from both countries.
Dr. Sushil Kumar, Head of Technical Cooperation, highlighted that agriculture is a vital component of India-Sri Lanka multi-dimensional bilateral partnership and agreed to facilitate more such interactions in specific areas such as bio-herbicides, bio-pesticides, compost enrichment technology and explore the possibility of strengthening institutional collaborations between the two countries in agriculture and allied fields”. The Press release added