- Import ban imposed with immediate effect
- Customs directed to stop clearing palm oil cargo
- Cultivation of palm oil to be completely banned
- Phased out removal required by plantation companies
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has instructed that the import of palm oil be banned with immediate effect, the President’s Media Division (PMD) said in a statement yesterday.
The Controller General of the Department of Imports and Exports Control has been advised to issue the relevant gazette order to give effect to this instruction by the Secretary to the President P.B. Jayasundera with immediate effect.
Additionally, the Director General of Customs has been informed of this decision and advised to refrain from clearing palm oil cargo at the Department of Customs. At the same time, the cultivation of oil palm (katupol) trees will be completely banned.
Meanwhile, orders have been issued under the relevant laws enforcing the advice given by the President to ban the cultivation of oil palm completely. About six months ago, the President had proposed a gradual ban on the cultivation of oil palm in the country.
Furthermore, those companies and entities which have done such cultivations shall be required to phase them out, with 10% being uprooted at a time, and replacing it with the cultivation of rubber or environmental friendly crops each year to free Sri Lanka from oil palm plantations and palm oil consumption.
When this is fully operational, the Government intends to stop the cultivation of palm oil and the consumption of palm oil completely.