Friday, February 5, 2010


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Sri Lanka Tea Board (SLTB) expects a target production of 300 million kilograms this year. It is optimistic about the performance of the industry.

The industry expects a total revenue of US$ 1.2 billion by the end of this year, Sri Lanka Tea Board Chairman, Lalith Hettiarachchi told Daily News Business.

He said that although the Board expected a target production of 300 million kgs last year, due to many reasons such as drought, low application of fertilizer and labour issues the industry could not meet its target. “Therefore, the Board had to revise its targets between 290 to 295 million kgs. Even though there was a slight drop in the target total production last year, the total production recorded a 289.8 million kg despite the difficulties”, he said.

There was a 40 percent drop in tea production in 2009 first quarter performance compared to 2008 first quarter production.

This was mainly due to the drought. In the second quarter there was a difference of 24 percent in the production comparatively to 2008 second quarter production in 2008.

In the third quarter of 2009 the production difference was dropped to 18 percent and in the fourth quarter the disparity of the tea production dropped further to 9.4 percent compared to 2008 quarterly tea production, Hettiarachchi said

However, the industry has recorded 25,195,733 million kgs of tea production during December 2009 while, in 2008 December tea production recorded 19,480,449 million kgs.

Therefore, compared to the corresponding year there is an increase of 5,715,284 million kgs. As the tea production report of January this year has not been issued yet, we expect that the production of January will be a similar figure to the December tea production last year, he said.

The Chairman said the Board expects a growth in the industry this year with the economic stability.

If tea prices remain at the current pricing scheme it will be easy to achieve the production targets and the target total revenue for 2010,” he said. C DE S

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