SL committed to strong fiscal discipline - Ravi K

Ravi Karunanayake addressing Summit in Hong Kong
Ravi Karunanayake addressing Summit in Hong Kong

Sri Lanka has ideal investment opportunities and diverse business options as the country has been achieving economic prosperity by accelerating growth with social inclusion, Minister of Finance Ravi Karunanayake told the FinanceAsia Sri Lanka Investment Summit in Hong Kong on Thursday.

The Minister said the country will reach “middle income status” in the near future.

Addressing the second Sri Lanka Investment Summit in Hong Kong, Minister Karunanayake said Sri Lanka has the vibrant backdrop of an invigorating economy seeking resurgence after a period of negative inferences.

He said the country has provided many options for discerning investors through the pragmatic implementation of the ‘Public-Private Partnership’ framework under a ‘win-win’ situation. He said one of the areas offering opportunities is agriculture as the traditional agricultural sector is due to be converted into a commercial one. The proposed Colombo International Financial City is another area of viable investment due to its geographical location and as it is open to huge markets of the countries in the SAARC region.

Minister Karunanayake said Sri Lanka expects to reach high economic echelons on par with the international financial centres such as Dubai and Hong Kong, assuring the full gamut of opportunities for investors.

He said infrastructure such as expressways, megapolis, provincial cities, railway and road transport mechanism are under construction. Along with making these projects a reality, Colombo will be developed to a maritime hub to provide options for any interested investor in the country.

Going by the punch line – this century is ‘Asia’s century’ Sri Lanka claims it share as the most peaceful country in the region for investors to launch their stable business ventures, the minister said.

He added, “We should have a national vision to address burning issues in the economy, including fiscal-sector operations. The best way for us to move forward is through “fiscal consolidation” supported by reforms in tax policy and administration.

“We set our target at 3.5% of budget deficit by the year 2020. And we gradually ensure the impacts of fiscal consolidation coming in,” said Karunanayake, reiterating that the government is targeting a budget deficit of 4.6% this year.” 

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