Sri Lanka and China to strengthen ties through agriculture

China’s Vice-Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs Qu Dongyu met Sri Lanka’s ambassador to China Karunasena Kodituwakku in Beijing earlier this week to enhance cooperation between the two countries in the field of agriculture.

Both officials were in agreement that the Ceylon-China Trade Agreement of 1952 – also known as the Rubber-Rice Pact – transformed the bilateral relationship.

At the meeting, Kodituwakku expressed Sri Lanka’s interest to cooperate with China in the field of food technology especially in the preservation of fruits and vegetables, to which Dongyu agreed.

China has a large number of training institutes and academies in the agricultural field, and has offered to train Sri Lankan officials.

Moreover, it agreed to share modern techniques and knowledge to help Sri Lanka double rice production, reduce post-harvest losses in fruits and vegetables, and practise crop diversification with animal husbandry.

The ratooning rice crop technology for instance, is used by Chinese farmers to harvest a single cultivation twice without having to replant the paddy for a second time.

Cooperation between the two countries in this sector is expected to help strengthen the uninterrupted friendship that they share.