Measures to build a stronger economy | Daily News

Measures to build a stronger economy

My Department’s mission is to achieve national prosperity through the development of the plantation industry. Primarily we seek the provision of incentives and other facilities to increase the yield of plantation crops. So the Government’s recent Budget was important for the industries and products we oversee.

Tea is a vital industry for our country. It employs two million people directly and indirectly and is part of the crucial agricultural sector which employs 27 percent of Sri Lanka’s population. Our tea industry and production are renowned throughout the world and the Colombo tea auction is the single largest tea auction in the world selling around 6.5 million kilograms weekly.

At present Sri Lanka ranks among the world’s top ten largest producers and 7th largest exporter of natural rubber. Sri Lanka Rubber Industry consists of two closely independent sectors; the rubber plantation industry which producers raw rubber and high-value new product innovations in finished rubber goods. Presently, Sri Lanka produces about 153,000 metric tons of natural rubber annually.

Export income

The plantation sector has consistently been one of the biggest contributors to our export income. Yet, their quality of life has remained under par. We will facilitate the shift from the line rooms to a house and for which 25,000 houses will be provided in the medium term. So the Budget will improve the quality of life for the plantation sector.

This investment is only possible because of the measures my government has taken to build a strong economy. Some of those decisions have been hard, and tough measures have been put in place. But let me assure you, decisions are always taken in the best interests of Sri Lanka and its people. We are working to fix the mistakes of the past and building a stronger economy for a better future for all Sri Lankans.

Sri Lanka has come a long way from the dark days of Mahinda Rajapaksa – who governed only for himself, his family and cronies. The economy was a mess and Sri Lankans lived in fear for their safety.

So far we have built hundreds of thousands of new homes to ensure every Sri Lankan has shelter by 2025. We have given rights back to Sri Lankans and to the media to speak freely.

The cost of goods like fuel and gas has been reduced. My government has provided Rs 20,000 to pregnant women and increased salaries for public servants so they can make ends meet. We have restored Sri Lanka’s international reputation, bringing in 2 million more tourists and creating jobs.

Of course, there is still more to do, so that everyone can walk the streets safely, our children can get a good education, and basic food is affordable. The economy is central to everything we do. Without a strong economy, we cannot afford to pay for schools or hospitals or jobs or wages. A strong economy and good infrastructure will bring foreign investment and increase wages for all Sri Lankans.

Better Sri Lanka for the future

We have a proven record, a clear vision and the determination and strong leadership to build a better Sri Lanka for the future. In order to do so the economy is central to everything we do. Without a strong economy, we cannot afford to pay for schools or hospitals or jobs or wages. A strong economy and good infrastructure will bring foreign investment and increase wages for all Sri Lankans.

Recently we published a Budget to build a stronger economy. It was a Budget for the enterprise. Only this government has the knowledge and ability to fix our economy. And only this government is trusted by the international community to deliver a fair and just economy where foreign companies will invest. Only by sticking to our plan to strengthen our economy can we keep Sri Lanka on the path to a better future. 


 

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