Lanka hopeful of getting IMF assistance

IMFSetting high hopes on securing assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Governor of Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) Arjuna Mahendran on Monday linked it to the revival of fortunes of the country’s economy.

Answering questions on the proposed assistance from the IMF, Mr Mahendran, who earlier held discussions with a team of the IMF, told The Hindu that he was hoping to get between $ 1 billion and $ 1.25 billion. But, “the amount is not so important. Once we have an agreement [with the IMF], the World Bank, ADB [Asian Development Bank], Japanese and German aid agencies will kick in. They are waiting for the IMF agreement. That’s the gateway.”

Over three years, the country could then “collectively and easily” mobilise $ 5 billion. This could be used to fund private entrepreneurs, he said. “We will kick off a fairly sustainable growth path, where we move away from excessive funding on government projects and over reliance on public sector to create jobs and keep the economy growing.” (The Hindu)

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