News

Consumer Affairs Act to be amended 

  • New Fertiliser Act to reflect organic plan 

By Buddhika Samaraweera 

 

The Cabinet of Ministers has approved a proposal to enhance a Bill prepared earlier to amend the Consumer Affairs Authority (CAA) Act, No. 9 of 2003, incorporating new provisions to suit the present day requirements. 

Approval had been granted at the Cabinet meeting held on 3 September 2018 to draft a Bill to amend the CAA Act. However, the Attorney General (AG) pointed out the need to further formalise this prepared Bill. The Trade Ministry has also identified further provisions to be included in the said Bill to meet the present requirements. Accordingly, the proposal submitted by the Trade Minister, Dr. Bandula Gunawardana to take necessary steps through the Legal Draftsman to include the identified regulations in the Bill, was approved by the Cabinet at its meeting held on 21 June. 

The Cabinet on 21 June also approved a proposal to replace the Regulation of Fertiliser Act, No. 68 of 1988 with an Act suited to modern needs. 

Furthermore, since the necessary steps have been taken under the President’s policy manifesto to implement the use of organic fertilisers in the country, the need to include the relevant provisions in the Regulation of Fertiliser Act has also been identified. However, various problems have emerged due to the fact that certain provisions of the said Act are insufficient and do not meet the present requirements. 

Taking the matter into consideration, the Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage had submitted a proposal to the Cabinet to introduce a new Act to replace the Regulation of Fertiliser Act by incorporating provisions to suit the present needs to which the Cabinet approval was granted. 

The Regulation of Fertiliser Act has been introduced to strengthen the existing legal framework to formalise fertiliser management and to regulate the production, preparation, importation and distribution of fertiliser and other relevant matters. 

A proposal to ban the use and importation of chemical fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides/weedicides was submitted to the Cabinet by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in April 2021 and the same was granted approval, following which the relevant gazette notification on the ban was issued.