One Million Home Based Economic Units Programme
In early days, self reliant Sri Lankan society was composed of a consistent family, healthy people, prosperous villages and the home economy was not a burden for anyone. Due to various external factors, the current trend is totally deviated from the above resulting a dependant culture increasing the physical and mental instability thus weakening the society.
Government has determined to revive the traditional system in line with the Mahinda Chintana concept of “ Building a Wonder Nation through strengthening the village economy by establishing a self reliant family” by strengthening the people economically and minimizing their dependence on the market for their requirements aiming at an affluent nation. The ambitious national programme “Divi Neguma” towards ‘A self reliant household – A wonderful Motherland’ is designed to establish one million domestic economic units countrywide with the scope of strengthening peoples’ living standards.
Ministry of Economic Development holds the core responsibility of the programme in coordination with several ministries which are involved in development and production activities. This scheme is planned to be cruised under three major groups namely - Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries and Domestic Industries.
Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Ministry of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development, Ministry of Technology and Research, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Skills Development and Ministry of State Resources and Enterprises are associates of Domestic Industries category.
Various institutions (mentioned below) which functions under their respective ministries are also contribute to this significant cause.
Export Development Board (EDB) and National Entrepreneurs Development Authority (NEDA) of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, Industrial Development Board (IDB), National Crafts Council (NCC), National Design Centre, Palm Development Board of the Ministry of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development and National Engineering Research and Development Center, National Science and Technology Commission, ‘Vidatha’ Centres of Ministry of Technology and Research contribute to the programme according to the vested subject areas.
- EDB’s role is exposing the home based industrialists to the international market and heading them for that.
- Initiating and enhancing new industries is the responsibility of IDB and NCC
- Technological support is provided by National Engineering Research and Development Center, National Science and Technology Commission and Skill & Vocational Training Centers.
- Preparation of the Development Plan and their implementation is handled and supervised by the sub committee of Industrial sector which consists of secretaries of relevant ministries chaired by senior Minister Hon. A.H.M Fowzie.
Followings are the various industrial sectors which were selected for the category.
- Handloom Industry
- Footwear and Leather Products
- Coir based industries
- Ornamental Fish (For Export Purposes)
- Ornamental plants and Foliage (For Export Purposes)
- Gift Items and Toys
- Packaging Industry
- Hand Craft Industry
- Palm based products
- Kithul based products
- Processed food and Beverages
- Light Engineering products
Programme is designed to cover all Grama Niladari Divisions (14,000) and institutes which their mechanism penetrates in to the grass root level are being used to implement the programme. As such, Centres relevant to IDB, Skill Training Centres and ‘Vidatha Centres’ are being taken up to touch the village.
Direct involvement of four government officials which are working in each division namely, the Samurdhi Officer, the Agrarian Services Officer, Grama Sevaka and the Health Services Officer is sought and as the first step a basic training and awareness on the programme is scheduled to be provided for them. These officers will be entrusted with enrolling families from each Grama Niladhari Division for implementing different projects under this programme.
Families have the option of selecting their choice from 50 industries and upon their selection they will be provided with knowledge, technology, training if required, financial support and a handbook to monitor progress. If the industry develops the potential of it’s production up to export quality, EDB will facilitate the event.
“Divi Neguma” programme should be a peoples’ movement and is very much expected to assist household units by enhancing their livelihoods and make a greater contribution to the economy.