Tag Archives: Sri Lanka

Shortage of Elephants For Perahera in Kandy

Elephants on Show in PeraheraElephants are often in the news these days. Afterall “Sri Lanka” and “elephants” go hand in hand. Indeed Sri Lanka has the highest density of population of elephants in Asia.

Fortunately the National Parks offer some protection, and the elephants can be seen in the National Parks of Yala, Lunugamvehera, Wilpattu, Minneriya (near Sigiriya), and Udawalawe. However some elephants can be found outisde these protected areas, which are mainly in the dry zones of the north, east and south east. These are all wild elephants in their natural habitat.

One sure way of seeing elephants is to attend the Perahera in Kandy. This is a festival where elephants are adorned and paraded down the streets along with brightly dressed musicians and dancers. The elephants used here are domesticated elephants.

The shortage of domesticated elephants is now of great concern, as the number of elephants available for this procession has been severely reduced. The government is proposing to confiscate any domesticated elephants through a court order in order to solve the shortage of domesticated elephants available for religious purposes. Of the 132 domesticated elephants available, 52 cannot take part.

The number of elephants available is also hindered by permit issues where 20 are currently under a court order.

This year the Perahera in Kandy takes place from 8th to 18th August. Probably with a reduced number of elephants compared to previous years.


EU Export Ban of Fish from Sri Lanka Now Lifted

sri_lankan-fishing_1As a result of Sri Lanka’s inability to control unregulated fishing practices, the European Union (EU) first gave a yellow card, and then a red one to the Sri Lankan Fishing Industry. The ban extended to fish caught by fishing vessels that carry the Sri Lankan flag.

After an 18 month assessment.

Sri Lanka have now got the all clear to be able to resume exporting fish to the EU after long diplomatic negotiations and a willingness to adapt to the rules and regulations imposed by the EU.

According to the Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, the Fisheries Sector accounts for 1.8% of Sri Lanka’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), with fish production amounting to 535 metric tonnes in 2014. There are over 270,000 fishermen who depend on fishing for a livelihood.

This welcome reprieve should hopefully be a big boost to the fishing industry, now enabling Sri Lankan exporters to reach the valuable EU market.

In a bid to increase productivity by modernising their equipment and fishing facilities, help is being sought from Norway. With a long tradition in fishing, it is hoped that Norwegian expertise will help Sri Lanka back on its feet again to be a worldwide provider of fish to the EU.