Chinese fertilizer ship to leave Sri Lanka’s maritime space - Agri. Minister
The vessel carrying the controversial fertilizer consignment shipped by China-based Qingdao Seawin Biotech Group Co., Ltd. will leave Sri Lanka’s maritime space, says Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage.
He conveyed this to the Court of Appeal today when a writ petition filed by the Centre for Environmental Justice was taken up today (December 08).
The petition was called before Appeals Court Judges Sobhitha Rajakaruna and Dhammika Ganepola.
The fertilizer shipment in question was under the spotlight over the past few months after the National Plant Quarantine Services (NPQS), which tested the fertilizer samples sent by the Qingdao Seawin Biotech, revealed the detection of the microorganism called ‘Erwinia’ in September.
Several days later, Sri Lanka decided to suspend the importation of organic fertilizer from Seawin Biotech.
The Chinese firm retaliated, saying that the NPQS took only three days to draw a suspicious conclusion although it takes more than 6 days to identify Erwinia as per the ISPM27 rule in IPPC (International Plant Protection Convention).
The “unscientific detection method and conclusion of NPQ in Sri Lanka” are not in compliance with the international animal and plant quarantine convention, Seawin Biotech claimed further and urged that Swiss SGS group, a top third-party testing organization, should re-test whether the samples contain Erwinia.
However, the Agriculture Minister had later insisted that the ship carrying the fertilizer consignment containing harmful bacteria will not be allowed to enter Sri Lanka.