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SL – Indonesia commits to strengthening bilateral relations – Sri Lanka Mirror – Right to know. The power to change

SL – Indonesia commits to strengthening bilateral relations – Sri Lanka Mirror – Right to know.  The power to change


Acting Finance Minister Shehan Semasinghe has announced plans to introduce two important bills to Parliament on May 22, aimed at supporting the country's economy.

These bills, the “Economic Transformation Bill” and the “Public Financial Management Bill,” are designed to improve public financial management, thereby guarding against future economic downturns.

Minister Semasinghe made the announcement today during a press conference at the Presidential Media Centre, themed “Collective Pathway to a Stable Country”.

Acting Finance Minister Shehan Semasinghe further said:

The government has scheduled the presentation of two important bills for the country's economy on May 22. One of these bills is the “Economic Transformation Act,” aimed at preventing future economic collapses. Notably, this legislation stems from the vision of President Ranil Wickremesinghe, rather than being proposed by the International Monetary Fund. The recent stabilization of the economy after previous recessions highlights the importance of preserving this stability in the future.

Furthermore, it is necessary to maintain optimal levels of public financial management to avoid future economic crises. The “Public Financial Management Bill” is expected to be presented to Parliament on the same day, with a focus on strengthening accountability in public financial management. This legislative initiative aligns with the recommendations of a collaborative program with the International Monetary Fund and is of significant importance for the future financial management of the country.

It is important to emphasize the crucial importance of these two bills for the future of the country. These projects contain many technical subtleties aimed at strengthening confidence in the economy and maintaining the trajectory of the new economic direction implemented so far.

Further developing the Economic Transformation Bill, it is of paramount importance to the economic growth of the country. Despite an economic contraction in the second and third quarters of 2023, a notable growth rate of 4.5% was achieved in the fourth quarter. Consequently, the benefits of this economic recovery have started to trickle down to the local level in the country.

Furthermore, it is imperative to strengthen the country's economic competitiveness and adapt the economy to face global challenges while promoting international cooperation and growth. Additionally, this bill addresses necessary changes in various sectors.

Specifically, the legislation encompasses critical reforms to international trade, trade agreements and climate change mitigation efforts.

The establishment of a new Economic Commission in Sri Lanka, aimed at attracting investments to improve competitiveness, foster an investor-friendly environment, expand international trade, establish the National Productivity Commission and develop export-related institutions , is also provided for in this bill.

Recently, Parliament ratified the decisions taken, particularly in terms of economic transformation. In 2022, the public debt ratio stood at 128%, a figure which is expected to be reduced to less than 95% by 2032.

Similarly, the fiscal requirement, which was 34.6% of gross domestic product in 2022, aims to be brought below 13% by 2032.

Effective debt servicing is paramount, with efforts focused on establishing Sri Lanka as an indebted country capable of meeting its obligations. The aim is to reduce the debt repayment rate from 9.4% in 2022 to less than 4.5% by 2027.

A proposed bill will define specific national objectives and measures taken to address economic challenges, providing a roadmap for sustainable economic growth, debt management, modernization of agriculture, regulation of imports and exports and economic governance.

Additionally, considerable attention has been given to the Public Financial Management Bill, aiming to identify weaknesses in current legislation and propose a robust legal framework to meet future needs.

(Presidents Media Division)




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