President Wickremesinghe Pledges Tax Relief and Economic Stabilization in Government’s Policy Statement
February 07, Colombo (LNW): President Ranil Wickremesinghe, in his address during the ceremonial opening of the Fifth Session of the Ninth Parliament, declared the government’s commitment to easing the tax burden on the public while implementing economic reforms for stabilizing the country’s economy.
The Head of State highlighted the positive shift in Sri Lanka’s economic trajectory, citing a notable recovery despite the challenges faced in 2022. Despite a 7.8% GDP contraction and six consecutive quarters of negative growth, the nation rebounded with a 1.6% growth rate in the third quarter of 2023.
President Wickremesinghe further announced a significant turnaround in the economic landscape, revealing that despite a 1.9% GDP deficit in 2022, the country achieved a surplus by the end of 2023. This achievement marks the first surplus since 1977.
The ceremonial opening of the Parliament took place following the proroguing of the Fourth Session of the Ninth Parliament on January 26. As per the tradition of a new session, the President presided over the ceremonial opening and presented the government’s policy statement. In the past, this statement was referred to as the Throne Speech and was presented by the Governor.
The adjournment debate on the government’s policy statement is scheduled for two days on February 8 and 9, from 9.30 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Additionally, the Resolution under the Essential Public Services Act is set to be approved without a debate on February 8, followed by the continuation of the adjournment debate on the government’s policy statement.