World Bank expresses support to Sri Lanka to build back post Covid 19
The World Bank has reportedly reassured Sri Lanka of its support to build back better from the COVID-19 impact.
The reassurance has been conveyed in a statement issued following the conclusion of a successful visit by the World Bank’s Country Director for Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka Faris Hadad-Zervos to the country.
During the visit, the World Bank Country Representative has reportedly reiterated the World Bank’s commitment to support Sri Lanka’s efforts towards recovery and to build back better from the COVID-19 shock.
According to reports, based in Kathmandu, Nepal, this latest mission followed the Country Director’s introductory visit to Sri Lanka last November after assuming his new role in July 2020. Hadad-Zervos was joined by Chiyo Kanda, the Country Manager for Maldives and Sri Lanka, based in Colombo.
“Sri Lanka’s economy is on the road to recovery after the worst downturn on record last year. The World Bank stands ready to support the Sri Lankan Government as it strives to protect its people from the pandemic, while addressing the vulnerabilities in the macro-fiscal environment,” Hadad-Zervos has been quoted as saying.
“Recovery and resilience in the post-COVID era can be accelerated by an export-oriented growth model that taps the full potential of private investments and that increases competitiveness and growth,” he has further stated.
The visit coincided with the launch of the Sri Lanka Development Update: Economic and Poverty Impact of COVID-19, which was released earlier this month.
The report provides an update on Sri Lanka’s economy and outlook, highlighting the devastating impact of the pandemic. Sri Lanka’s economy contracted by 3.6% in 2020, the worst growth performance on record, as is the case in many countries fighting the pandemic, but is expected to recover to 3.4% in 2021, mainly due to foreign investments as well as normalising tourism and other economic activities, local media reports have stated.
During the visit, the World Bank management team had met with key Government officials, including Sri Lanka’s Minister of Plantation Ramesh Pathirana, Minister of Water Supply Vasudeva Nanayakkara, Minister of Highways Johnston Fernando, State Minister of Money and Capital Market and State Enterprise Reforms Ajith Nivard Cabraal, Special Presidential Task Force on Economic Revival and Poverty Alleviation Chairman Basil Rajapaksa, Secretary to the President Dr. P.B. Jayasundera, Secretary to the Treasury S.R. Attygalle, Ministry of Technology Secretary Jayantha De Silva, Principal Advisor to the President Lalith Weeratunga and Central Bank Governor Prof. W.D. Lakshman.
Sri Lanka has many development partners prepared to assist in its development programme that includes multilateral financial institutions as well as bilateral donors. Sri Lanka’s geographical positioning in the Indian ocean and the many trade agreements as well as trade concessions enjoyed by the country have placed it in a position to become a business hub in the South Asian region. The government of Sri Lanka is also committed to take the country to the next level of development and is currently engaged in commencing many projects as part of this programme. All these have expanded economic activities in the country as well as business/investment opportunities in key economic sectors.
|Article Code :||VBS/AT/20210427/Z_5|