“In fact, as Brazil’s President Lula Da Silva said in 2007, when his country was enjoying a boom, it is the 'momento magico'.
Now This is Sri Lanka’s ‘magic moment’ and we should not fritter away this moment, but make strategies to achieve our goals and the Chambers too should look positively at the opportunities that are unfolding”, National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (NCCSL), President Sunil G Wijesinha said.
Many of the macro indicators of the economy are encouraging. There is an exciting infrastructure drive, addressing long-standing constraints to private enterprise activity.
Unemployment has declined considerably and poverty alleviation projects are impressive. Inflation has been reigned into single digits. There is a concerted effort to control the Budget deficit and build a better Balance of Payments situation. Foreign reserves are at comfortable levels and exchange rates and interest rates are more stable.
Most notably, GDP growth has picked up at a steady pace – and this is amid a difficult global economic scenario where even the emerging giants India and China have seen growth falter slightly”, he was speaking at the 54th AGM of the NCCSL on Thursday in Colombo.
The country has a vision to reach a per capita income level of $ 4,000 by 2016. Some say Sri Lanka will become a 'Breakout Nation'. What is needed is more inclusive growth and a more equitable standard of living for our people. We need to bridge the economic divide and need a coordinated strategic plan for the country.
The contribution that the private sector can make has been made abundantly clear by the experiments of some major economies that allocated a prominent role to it.
To achieve a GDP growth of eight percent or higher, Sri Lanka needs to raise its annual rate of investment from the current level of around 26 percent of GDP to at least 35 percent. With increasing pressure on the Budget and public investment likely to be capped at around six percent, this higher investment ratio needs to come almost entirely from private investment.
“This is our 'momento magico' – Sri Lanka’s magic moment. The goal of the Chambers and the goal of the Government is the same. We need to synchronise our efforts to bring sustained, fast growth to our country in an inclusive manner, Wijesinha said.