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Author Topic: Special fund to promote and market “Ceylon Tea”  (Read 926 times)
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« on: September 27, 2010, 02:28:33 AM »

Special fund to promote and market “Ceylon Tea”
26 September 2010

The Sri Lanka Tea Board (SLTB) is to implement a new promotion and marketing strategy for ‘Ceylon Tea’ through the setting up of a special fund. A new levy on tea exports will be introduced to raise money for this fund, said SLTB Director General H.D. Hemarathna. The levy of Rs.3.50 per a kilo from tea sales will come into force in three months and will be collected by the SLTB which regulates the tea industry, he said.

A 20-member committee comprising representatives of all stakeholders has been appointed to implement this aggressive marketing cum promotional strategy of Ceylon Tea. This committee will manage the fund directly under the supervision of the SLTB, Mr. Hemarathna said. The committee is empowered to rebuild the image of Sri Lankan tea in the world as even traditional buyers may have now forgotten the taste of Ceylon Tea due to the lack of focus on this important aspect, he added.
He noted that the new tax would be levied in addition to the current Cess of Rs. 4.00 per kilo. The funds raised from the existing Cess are being used partly for tea marketing as well as replanting and factory modernization.

The Committee will consult the trade so that a practical approach can be embarked on exporting value added tea. “The Government’s policy is to ensure that a major quantity of Sri Lankan teas find markets in value added form. The Ministry of Plantations is looking at what kind of incentives should be provided to the industry for this purpose,” he added.

Measures have been taken to strengthen the Sri Lanka Tea Board’s capacity especially its laboratories, as well as the Tea Research Institute to do its job better. The Ministry is looking at various legislative enactments concerning tea so that the laws can be brought in line with the new objectives. The Sri Lanka Tea Board is examining the tariff and non tariff barriers in place in a number of buyer countries and negotiating a way out with a view to exporting more Sri Lankan Tea.

Source: www.sundaytimes.lk http://www.sundaytimes.lk/100926/BusinessTimes/bt27.html
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