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Sino-Lankan Economic Relations: A Dynamic and Forward Looking Perspective

Can there be a great leap forward for Sri Lanka?

A previous Pathfinder Foundation (PF) Economic Alert (64) argued that the Sino-Lanka FTA
has the potential to be the ‘Jewel in the Crown’ in the bilateral economic relationship. It can
have a transformative impact not just on market access for Sri Lanka’s exports to China but
also on inward investment and technology transfer. Internal trends within China also
reinforce the prospects for an encouraging future in the bilateral economic relationship.
Furthermore, China’s Maritime Silk Road initiative provides a framework for a multifaceted
strengthening of the partnership. High priority should be attached to taking advantage of the
existing close bilateral Sino-Lanka relationship to shape the economic links between the two
countries to serve Sri Lanka’s development priorities. It is important to elaborate briefly on
these themes.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 January 2015 14:01

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The Risky Business of Price Controls and Guaranteed Prices

The anticipated national elections have spawned a spate of misguided and unaffordable claims and counter claims. There have been calls for price controls for ‘essential commodities’ and a higher guaranteed price for paddy farmers as well as the introduction of a guaranteed price for fish. When considering such requests, it is important to learn from the mistakes of the past. Repeating policies, which have undermined the development of the country and ultimately imposed additional burdens on the people, would not serve anyone’s interest, particularly those who need ‘relief’ the most. In this connection, it would be useful to examine why price controls and subsidizing ‘essential commodities’ was a failed policy in the past. There is also merit in considering what the best instrument is for providing relief and how it can be targeted to those most in need. Finally, one needs to understand how best to treat the causes rather than the symptoms of the ‘cost of living problem’ which are triggering the pressure for these distortionary policies.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 October 2014 14:55

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A Strategizing to Maximize Benefits from Chinese Economic Expansion and Diversification

ñ;=re ;=fuda ÿla iem foflys u meje;s

ì;= is;=jï rE fuka msgq fkd mdú;

                   ie,<sysKs ixfoaYh

Akin to figures painted on a wall

Friends do not dodge at all

May he be in joy or grief

Hedge of genuine friends no brief

(Salalihini Sandeshaya- Thotagamuwe Sri Rahula Thero)


Sri Lanka has utilized its newly found freedom from 30 years of terrorism and bloodshed for the promotion of several development projects and programs over the past few years. The primary objective of these types of projects, is to make Sri Lanka an international and/or regional hub for maritime, aviation, commercial, education and energy businesses.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 September 2014 14:25

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Prime Minister Abe’s Visit: An Opportunity to Make up for Lost Time

The Prize on Offer.

The Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Sri Lanka offers the chance to reflect upon the fact that Japan has been a steadfast and generous partner throughout Sri Lanka’s post-independence era. At the San Francisco conference Sri Lanka drew upon Lord Buddha’s teachings to plead for the magnanimous treatment of Japan at the end of the World War II. This constituted a landmark in the bilateral relations between the two countries. Since then, Japan has been generous in its support to Sri Lanka at both the bilateral and multilateral levels. Prime Minister Abe’s visit can serve to open a new chapter in bilateral economic relations based on sharply increased flows of Japanese FDI.

Last Updated on Friday, 05 September 2014 15:18

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Balancing Investor Friendly Land Policies and the National Interest.

Land: A Crucial Determinant of Economic Prospects.

As a factor of production, land is a crucial determinant of a country’s economic prospects. Under-utilized land undermines opportunities for gainful employment and wealth creation.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 19:23

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Setting the Strategic Direction for Faster Growth: a Challenge for Both India and Sri Lanka.

Unrealistic Expectations

Prime Minister Modi’s elections were hailed as a resounding victory for his pro-growth/pro-business agenda. There was an expectation among pro-market economists and businessthat Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s maiden effort would lay out a vision for five years; introduce major structural reforms; and administer some necessary but bitter medicine in pursuit of fiscal consolidation. Instead, critics claimed that the budget seemed to have been prepared by incumbent bureaucrats and represented unimaginative continuity rather than a bold new vision.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 30 July 2014 09:33

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Adverse Economic Impact of Ethno-Religious Violence

 Unite to Counter the Ugly Head of Extremism


Political stability and social harmony are crucial for creating a conducive enabling environment for sustained development and upliftment of the lives of all Sri Lankans. Any instability on these fronts has serious adverse implications for development. The recent violent disturbances in the country should, therefore, be a matter of the utmost concern to all Sri Lankans.

Last Updated on Thursday, 26 June 2014 13:42

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El Nino Looms: Are We Ready?

There is an emerging consensus that this likely to be an El Nino year. Experts have indicated that there is a 58% probability that it will begin to take effect in 3Q 2014; there is an 80% chance of it materializing in the last quarter of this year. 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 June 2014 21:38

Hits: 3524


India Modified: Any Lessons for Sri Lanka?

Pro-growth, Pro-business Leader in the Driving Seat

Narendra Modi’s dramatic victory has given him a resounding mandate to pursue his pro-growth / pro-business agenda. He campaigned unreservedly on a strongly developmental platform. The results indicate that the majority of Indians want higher growth, lower inflation and less corruption. The Prime Minister-elect has built up a strong administrative track-record during his tenure as Chief Minister of Gujrat. This is cited to demonstrate his capacity to implement robust reforms to revive the stalling growth in the Indian economy, which has declined from 9% to 5.5%.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 28 May 2014 19:45

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The Strategic Development Act: Is it a Success or Should it be Reviewed?

All governments have attached high priority to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) since the 1970s. It is important to understand why this has been the case and pose the question whether the Strategic Development Act (SDA) contributes to creating an investor friendly environment.

Last Updated on Monday, 12 May 2014 15:19

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Balancing the short Term Vs. Long term Interest of Workers

Proposals for minimum wages, unemployment benefit, pension for private sector, medical insurance…


There were recent press reports that a number of trade unions have submitted proposals to the National Pay Commission requesting establishment of; 1. a National Wages Commission for the private sector; 2. a national minimum wage; 3. an unemployment benefit insurance scheme; 4. a pension scheme for EPF members. In addition, a medical insurance and social security scheme for the informal sector employees has also been proposed. 

Last Updated on Monday, 21 April 2014 09:40

Hits: 8325





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