President Maithripala Sirisena said today that he expects to ban tobacco cultivation by 2020.
He made this observation during a ceremony of handing over letters of appointment to Ministry of Mahaweli Development and Environment field assistants.
Sirisena stated that the purpose of taking this decision is to prevent the damage and health issues caused by smoking cigarettes.
He also said that the government is working on increasing the forest area from 29% to 32%.
Meanwhile, speaking of the Wilpattu deforestation, Sirisena said that it was authorized by an inter-ministerial committee of the former government and some people are attempting to implicate that on the current government. Sirisena also said that he never served in the committee.