"So it is paradoxical for such laws to remain on the statute books and for us to expect investment and employment generation," said Ravi Peiris, director general of the Employer's Federation of Ceylon (EFC).
"What's extremely important is to ensure we strike the correct balance between efficiency and equity," he told a news conference to announce the findings of an EFC survey among companies on labour laws.
"One cannot be achieved without the other. If we only support one and ignore the other, we are bound to lose both."
The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon conducted the survey amongst its members to find out whether the country's existing labour legislation was an enabler or in fact an obstructer to the generation of business and employment in the country.
The findings would help the EFC to lobby government for labour law reforms on behalf of employers throughout the country."We firmly believe labour regulation needs an overhaul in line with changes taking place today," Peiris said.
"We do not propose a hire and fire framework which would inevitably be disastrous.
"We always told the government that highly inflexible labour laws need to be replaced by a basic legal framework of labour protection with room for flexibility in contractual arrangements, work force size, working times and functions."