Kotagala Plantation, a unit of Lankem Ceylon PLC has decided to set up a 15,000 hectare rubber plantation in Cambodia.
According to Lankem Chairman A. Rajaratnam, planting rubber in Cambodia is expected to begin in the latter part of the ongoing financial year, with crops expected approximately within six to seven years.
“The area that will be used for cultivation in Cambodia is nearly four times as large as the company’s cultivations in Sri Lanka, and will be key to securing the company’s future financial success”, Rajaratnam said in Lankem’s latest annul report.
This move by the plantation company has been prompted by Lankem’s belief that it would be extremely difficult for mono-crop firms such as Kotagala and its other plantation arm Agarapatna Plantation, to meet the future wage demands, particularly when tea markets worsens.
Rajaratnam believes, Kotagala will be in a better position to spread the risks, as it has both tea and rubber plantations.