Nakao reaffirms support to Sri Lanka | Daily News


Colombo to host ADB Annual sessions in 2021

Nakao reaffirms support to Sri Lanka

SL economy bouncing back - Finance Minister Mangala
Asian Development Bank President Takehiko Nakao with Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera
Asian Development Bank President Takehiko Nakao with Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera

Asian Development Bank President Takehiko Nakao, expressed his condolences to the people of Sri Lanka and reaffirmed to continue support to Sri Lanka at a meeting with Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweea in Fiji.

Nakao also responded positively to the urgent request made by Minister Samaraweera to assist the private sector of the tourism industry. The ADB President also reconfirmed Lanka’s willingness to host the 2021 Annual Meeting in Colombo.

Meanwhile, Minister Samaraweera expressing his views to Bloomberg Economics in the sidelines of the ADB Annual sessions in Fiji, said the Sri Lankan economy was very resilient because the government had laid a strong foundation for the economy during the last four years, based on sound macroeconomic fundamentals, Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera told Bloomberg Economics.

“As a result, the setback we thought would materialize after the Easter Sunday tragedy is not happening and the Sri Lankan economy is bouncing back much quicker than anticipated,” he said.

The minister said the macroeconomic indicators showed positive trends with the country’s US$ 7.6 foreign reserves, capable of covering four months of imports, the trade deficit declining to a five year low in February and Sri Lanka achieving a primary balance surplus for the first time in 60 years.

Samaraweera said the security situation was also getting much better, with the Sri Lankan security forces and police within a very short period of time, getting very much on top of the situation, while tourists were presumably returning to the country.

He said there were many options available to address the situation, but at the moment, those need not be utilized because they were on top of the situation.

The Minister requested all friends of Sri Lanka not to stop visiting the island because the country was a beautiful place and terrorist attacks of this nature could happen else where in the world too.

The minister said upon arrival, that he had been speaking to banks in Fiji and they had a very positive outlook on the future of Sri Lanka. He said serious consideration would be given on wavering duties for the import of security equipment required by hotels, so that the tourist industry could get back to normalcy as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, discussions would begin with the Asian Development Bank to assist the private sector tourism industry in Sri Lanka by offering soft funding assistance to rebuild, based on sustainable tourism principles, Samaraweera said.


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