HNB, number one in Business Today Top 30 | Daily News


 

Political stability will help draw more investments

HNB, number one in Business Today Top 30

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa with the Top 30 winners. Pictures by Sudath Malaweera
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa with the Top 30 winners. Pictures by Sudath Malaweera

Potential investors look seriously at Sri Lanka but keep their projects on hold until political stability is established in the country, said former Minister, Prof G L Peiris at the Business Today Top 30 awards ceremony at Colombo Hilton on Monday.

“Political stability in the country is vital to serve this purpose. Though Sri Lanka occupies a sensitive geographical space in the Indian Ocean, the country should be politically stable for the business community to perform its functions adequately.

In order to stimulate and encourage investment into this country, the state should also bring clarity and precision with regard to taxation.

Minister, Prof G L Peiris

Decisions on taxation should not be subject to constant change. Uncertainty and unpredictability of monetary and fiscal policy would discourage investors hence quality of fiscal policy must be enhanced.

An investor would want to know how long it would take to recover his investment and to make a reasonable profit. Ad-hoc taxation decisions may discourage major investors to the country.

The most important single strength of Sri Lanka is the unique caliber of the island’s human resources. The country suffered from two youth insurrections during the last few decades. People who are turned out by the system have a legitimate expectation of obtaining gainful employment.

The President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has plans to strengthen the linkage of synergies between education and employment.

ICT industry in the country is worth approximately one billion USD at the moment. “But it could easily be elevated to the level of three USD billion.”

When attracting serious investments to this country and paving way for business community to prosper and to make contributions to the national economy, we must pay our attention to the judicial system. With a view to resolving commercial disputes, informal methods of dispute resolution should be looked into”, Prof Peiris said.

He said the government and business community should work hand-in-hand to create an environment which is conducive for optimal performance. Hatton National Bank reclaimed the number one bank in the ‘Business Today Top 30 2018-2019’ after 22 years. Commercial Bank of Ceylon was ranked at number two and LOLC Holdings rose to number three.

According to Business Today that recognizes top 30 best performing corporates, 2018-2019 has been a year in which resilience, innovation and the search for new markets played a decisive role.

The selection process for the Business Top 30 is based on the published information of companies listed in the Colombo Stock Exchange and social considerations for the financial year ended December 31, 2018 and March 31, 2019 and was compiled with the assistance of KPMG Sri Lanka. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa graced the occasion as the chief guest with Basil Rajapaksa.

 


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