In 2019 the government introduced a policy where taxes and prices on cigarettes would be based on an indexation formula. Forgetting to implement the policy is costly: it has resulted in a foregone revenue of 85 billion from 2020-2022 and will cost a further 45 billion in 2023.
Sri Lanka introduced a ban on chemical fertiliser importation, and a shift to organic fertiliser starting April 2021. As existing stocks were beginning to deplete Verité Research conducted a survey in July to capture the views of the farmers on the policy and its impact on them. The farmers were broadly supportive of the policy; but expected a much reduced harvest due to the lack of knowledge and time to make the transition.
Increased exposure to healthier air is a positive note among the many tragic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. As movement was restricted to prevent the spread of the disease, air quality in Colombo drastically improved leading to a 60% reduction in the average duration that people in Colombo were exposed to unhealthy air.