Economic performance of U.S. and India - bright spots for Sri Lanka


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On the outlook for economic growth of Sri Lanka, Dr. Weerasinghe said the country was expected to grow above 5.5 per cent during 2015.

The recovery of the United States’ economy and India’s growth prospects are “bright spots” for the Sri Lankan economy, Nandalal Weerasinghe, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL), has said.

The United Kingdom, buying a major chunk of apparel products from Sri Lanka, was faring well and this would also augur well for the local economy, Dr. Weerasinghe told the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce recently.

However, he said the slow growth of the European economy could have an [adverse] impact on Sri Lanka unless the latter got back the concession of GSP Plus and obtained the withdrawal of the ban on fisheries exports to the European Union.

The GSP Plus was withdrawn five years ago due to a host of factors that included failure to implement international conventions on human rights. The ban on fisheries exports was imposed in January this year on the ground that Sri Lanka's administrative system for fisheries was not in tune with international fisheries laws. The Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government has been taking steps for the restoration of GSP Plus and fisheries’ exports.

As for the implications of the economic slowdown of China and the depreciation of Japanese Yen, the CBSL official felt that there would be “marginal impact” on Sri Lanka. He noted that more vehicles were being imported from Japan.

On the outlook for economic growth of Sri Lanka, Dr. Weerasinghe said the country was expected to grow above 5.5 per cent during 2015.

According to the data released by the Department of Census and Statistics in the middle of September, the gross domestic product (GDP) of Sri Lanka, during the first half (January-June) of 2015, saw a growth rate of 5.6 per cent over the previous year’s corresponding period.

As in the past, services led other sectors with 7.1 per cent. Agriculture had 3.3 per cent growth and industries – 1.3 per cent. Five months ago, the government changed the base period from 2002 to 2010 and as per the revised calculations, Sri Lanka had registered low rates of growth in 2013 and 2014 with 3.4 per cent and 4.5 per cent.

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