Country recorded highest FDI, exports in 2017 – PM

Ranil Wickremesinghe

Sri Lanka recorded its highest Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) of USD 1900 million in 2017, said Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday.

“This was in addition to the investment made to the Hambantota harbour. The country’s highest exports was also recorded in the same year,” the Prime Minister said.

The Prime Minister said that more investment is expected this year with even higher Foreign Direct Investment and exports by 2020.

“This would boost development in the country,” the Premier said.

Prime Minister Wickremesinghe made these observations at a ceremony held to present appointment letters to 4,511 recruits to the Public Management Assistant Service.

The Prime Minister further said that since the conflict ended in 2009, the country has reached a standard where youth could be recruited to the public service.

He added in addition, the Good Governance government has created stability that has resulted in a condusive atmosphere where youth can be recruited to the public service, the setting up of Free Trade Zones, Tourist Zones and training youth through Yowun Senankaya to create employment opportunities.

“The government had to take two years to get rid of the burden of loans,” the Premier said. He also said when the Good Governance government was elected, the country’s economy was in a precarious position and we were unable to settle the colossal loans obrained by the previous regime.

“We have plans to create three more Free Trade Zones In Bingiriya, Kalutara and Weligama apart from the Hambantota Free Trade Zone,” the Prime Minister said. “Between 1978 to 1992, only three Free Trade Zones were developed. But now, we have been able to construct four within the past two years. In addition, we plan to set up three Tourist Zones,” the Premier added.

The Prime Minister also stated that the salaries of the Public Management Assistant Service would be increased on par with those of the private sector employees. He also said that the youth would be recruited to the public service, private sector job creation expanded, self employment projects promoted and a development bank set up to provide capital to the large scale businesses. The Prime Minister said the the Public Management Assistant Service acts as a mediator between the government and the public to implement these policies and develop the country allowing the people to enjoy the dividends of development.

Public Administration and Management Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara and Minister Daya Gamage were also present.

(Source: Daily News – By Sandasen Marasinghe)