COLOMBO: Sri Lanka will import 200,000 metric tons of rice immediately from India, Pakistan and Myanmar to address the rice shortfall in its domestic market, a statement from the Ministry of Industry and Commerce said on Friday. Due to heavy floods this year, Sri Lanka is facing a severe rice shortage. Sri Lanka will purchase 100,000 metric tons of rice from India immediately, Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen said, adding the rice will be purchased from private Indian importers.
The other 100,000 metric tons of rice will come from Pakistan and Myanmar. A four-member team from Sri Lanka will leave for Pakistan and Myanmar on Friday evening to pick rice varieties for the Sri Lankan market, and the purchase with Pakistan and Myanmar will be at government to government levels, Bathiudeen said. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka has also commenced government level talks on the possibility of purchasing rice from Thailand, Bathiudeen added.