Sri Lanka’s Economic Future Hinges on IMF Plan, Warns Cabinet Spokesman
January 03, Colombo (LNW): Dr. Bandula Gunawardhana, the Cabinet Spokesman Minister, emphasized the critical turning point reached by Sri Lanka’s economy in 2023 under the leadership of President Ranil Wickremesinghe’s government. However, looking ahead to 2024, he cautioned that the economic challenges persist and are expected to endure until 2027.
During a recent Cabinet press briefing, Dr. Gunawardhana stressed the importance of adhering to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program until 2024 to mitigate the ongoing crisis. He highlighted that diverging from this plan could drastically limit any government’s lifespan to a mere two weeks, irrespective of the ruling party or the President.
The Minister underscored the nation’s reliance on international financial institutions like the IMF, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and creditors for sustaining the economy. He elucidated that without agreements in place with these entities, Sri Lanka would struggle to function financially, unable to even secure necessary imports such as petroleum, fertilizers, pharmaceuticals, and essential consumer goods.
Dr. Gunawardhana emphasized that the country’s access to international loans in 2027 would be limited to a maximum of USD 1,500 million, emphasizing the necessity of adhering to international financial regulations.
In light of these challenges, the Minister urged for significant sacrifices in the coming year, calling for collective efforts to navigate through the existing economic crises and ensure the country’s stability.