Sri Lankan government to establish Development Finance Bank to assist emerging businesses and entrepreneurs
Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says the government is looking at establishing a Development Finance Bank that would provide financial assistance for emerging businesses and entrepreneurs.
The Prime Minister has reportedly said that apart from the establishment of the new bank, a list of changes would be brought to the private sector through the amendment of the Inland Revenue Act, which is to come into effect on April 1st.
The Premier has made these observations at the induction ceremony to appoint the new president for the SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industries.
According to him, the separate bank to assist development and emerging business ventures would be set up with the assistance of four leading Banks in the country.
“We will be establishing a Development Finance Bank to provide financial assistance for emerging businesses and entrepreneurs. We will be doing so with the assistance of DFCC Bank, NDB, Bank of Ceylon and Peoples’ Bank. Since the 1960s, the funding given by the development financing system enabled a large number of manufacturing industries and tourist services. The rise of our apparel industry is thanks to the funding given by our financing system. We got off that some time ago as globalization crept in, but we find this is essential if the Sri Lankan businesses are to develop and compete,” Wickremesinghe has said.
“The private sector has pointed out several shortcomings in the recently enacted Inland Revenue Act. We are currently in discussion with the private sector and hope to bring in amendments to the Act in the near future,” the Prime Minister has added
The Premier has further noted, “I believe that in the next decade Asia will develop its own trade system, much like that of European Union; and we in the SAARC must integrate. Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) is one such free trade agreement. India has joined this partnership and Sri Lanka too should be applying.”
According to Wickremesinghe, Sri Lanka needs a mechanism to address matters regarding the ease of doing business.
“When we evaluated the situation, we found that there are many issues concerning ease of doing business, which could have been resolved by bureaucrats, but were dealt with by politicians instead. A mechanism is needed to remove obstacles and enhance the ease of doing business in Sri Lanka.”
The establishment of the Finance Development Bank along with other initiatives put forward by the Sri Lankan government would help boost businesses in the country’s private sector. Therefore, the many moves undertaken by the government to help improve the doing-business environment in the country would create an excellent venue for foreign businesses/investors to set up their operations in Sri Lanka.
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