The government plans to allocate Rs. 1.5 billion for the Paddy Marketing Board to purchase the 2013 Yala paddy harvest.
The government expects the 2013 harvest to be significantly higher than the last year's which was damaged due to the extended drought.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his capacity as the Minister of Finance and Planning has proposed to authorize the Secretary to the Treasury to allocate Rs.l.5 billion from the Revolving Fund of the General Treasury for the purchase of the Yala 2013 harvest.
The government has released Rs.899 million as advances to the District Secretaries of the relevant Districts for the purchase of Maha 2012/13 paddy.
The estimated paddy production of Maha 2012/2013 was around 2.72 million metric tons and as at 30th June, the PMB has purchased 22,705 metric tons.
The Maha paddy production has increased by 10% in Mannar and Vavuniya Districts, 42% in Hambantota District and 55% in Kurunegala District.
Harvesting of paddy of the Yala Season 2013 commences towards the end of this month and State Banks have pledged Rs. 1.6 billion as loans to the Paddy Marketing Board to purchase the Yala crop.
The Cabinet has approved the President's proposal for the Treasury to allocate funds.