Sri Lanka finishing pre-requisites for IMF support – President


By Uditha Jayasinghe

COLOMBO (Reuters) -Sri Lanka is finishing the pre-requisites to unlock a $2.9 billion bailout from the Worldwide Financial Fund (IMF) and expects speedy approval from the worldwide lender, President Ranil Wickremesinghe stated on Saturday.

“We’re efficiently finishing the troublesome stage required to get help from the Worldwide Financial Fund. We anticipate to get their consent directly,” Wickremesinghe stated in his deal with to the nation to mark the seventy fifth Independence Day.

Sri Lanka, caught within the worst monetary disaster since independence from Britain in 1948 triggered by a extreme scarcity of {dollars}, has seen steep inflation, a foreign money plunge and its economic system slide into recession.

The island of twenty-two million individuals has additionally been hit by excessive taxes, a scarcity of important gadgets akin to drugs and gasoline, and every day energy cuts.

Wickremesinghe, who took over after his predecessor fled the nation and resigned final yr after 1000’s of protesters occupied his workplace and residence, has pledged to place the economic system again on monitor however warned it is going to be an uphill job.

“I do know that most of the choices I’ve been compelled to take since assuming the presidency have been unpopular …. I’ll proceed this new reform program with the bulk of people that love this nation,” he added.

Sri Lanka is at present centered on getting financing assurances from key bilateral collectors China and Japan. India, the third main creditor, agreed to help debt restructuring final month.

Sri Lanka’s central financial institution estimates an financial turnaround within the second half of 2023 and inflation to achieve single digits by the tip of this yr.

(Reporting by Uditha Jayasinghe; Enhancing by Sudipto Ganguly and Mark Potter)