Entering into more trade agreements will increase export revenue – Dr. Bandula | Daily News

Entering into more trade agreements will increase export revenue – Dr. Bandula


Cabinet Spokesperson Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena yesterday highlighted the importance of entering into more and more trade agreements to increase the export revenue of the country.

The Minister was speaking at the Cabinet media briefing at the Government Information Department.

He said that the biggest national crisis is the collapse of the country's reserves and the inability to pay foreign debt installments and interest. He also said that the country is passing through the worst phase in the history of 75 years after independence in terms of international trade transactions.

“Our country has been ranked very low by internationally recognised institutions for the settlement of international transactions and that no politician can provide a solution politically in these rankings,” he added.

The Minister said that if the letters of credit issued by the country are not accepted by the relevant countries, what the country needs cannot be imported. The ability to import is determined by the foreign assets that the country has,” he added.

He said that the Import Feasibility Index of Gross Foreign Assets will be prepared and the import feasibility of the country's gross foreign assets means that the assets should last for at least three months for importation. He said that it is the general acceptance.

“There is no political solution for this issue. Since our country does not have such a capability, the solution is to increase the foreign exchange earnings as much as possible, reduce the foreign exchange flowing out of the country, reduce the pressure on the balance of payments and increase foreign resources,” the Minister added.

He said that if the country does not increase foreign reserves by restructuring debts and developing a policy to pay the debt, it may be in a very difficult position.

The Minister said that many countries such as Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia and China among others have entered into free trade agreements and if Sri Lanka is not included in the free trade agreements, our producers will not be able to compete in the market when goods are sent from other countries with tariff concessions.



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