By Ravi Ladduwahetty
The Asian Development Bank has doubled its assistance to Sri Lanka with US$ 500 million which will be used as development assistance beginning 2012 to 2015.
"The ADB has opened a new combination fund from rich member nations which will provide additional provisions of assistance for countries such as Sri Lanka," Senior Minister for International Monetary Cooperation Dr. Sarath Amunugama told The Island Financial Review yesterday.
"The funds will be used for the rest of the South Port development project, outstation network of roads, water management and education projects, and funds have also been allocated for science and technology as well," he said.
"ADB continues its strong relationship with the government of Sri Lanka and there’s very solid commitment for supporting critical areas, identified for development in its 10 year plan," Country Director in Sri Lanka Rita O Sullivan told The Island Financial Review yesterday
The ADB’s Board approved the country’s 5 year partnership strategy. ADB’s Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Sri Lanka covers the period 2012–2016. During next five years, ADB’s strategy for Sri Lanka focuses on three pillars: (i) inclusive and sustainable economic growth, (ii) catalyzing private investment and enhancing the effectiveness of public investment, and (iii) human resource and knowledge development. ADB’s interventions will be strategically focused on 5 sectors, namely, transport, energy, water supply, education/skills development, and public sector management.
Over the next 3 years (2012–2014), Sri Lanka’s total resource envelope will be about $900 million, an annual average of about $300 million (about $100 million from the Asian Development Fund and about $200 million from Ordinary Capital Resources). Asian Development Fund is the concessional lending facility and the Ordinary Capital Resources is based on LIBOR.
"The crosscutting themes of the strategy are also in line with the government’s priorities and include the environment and climate change, gender, governance, and regional cooperation. All ADB’s interventions will attempt to incorporate components of these crosscutting themes.
"ADB’s operations also attempt to leverage its resources to attract private capital and will work with bilateral and multilateral development partners to improve coordination of the overall assistance package and to improve development effectiveness," the ADB Director remarked.