Sri Lanka 2008 economic growth 6.0 to 6.5: Central Bank

Nov 06, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s economic growth is likely to fall to between 6.0 and 6.5 percent in 2008, the island’s central bank has said, downgrading a previous forecast of 6.5 to 7.0 percent amidst a global slowdown. In 2007 Sri Lanka’s economy expanded by 6.8 percent in 2007, according to the country’s statistics office.

The new growth numbers are not directly comparable with past data as old data was compiled by the central bank on a different data model.

When both numbers were available the difference between the growth estimates of the two agencies was about 0.5 percent.

Sri Lanka’s economy grew about 6.6 percent in the first half of 2008, according to official data. But in the last quarter prices of major commodity exports like tea and rubber have collapsed amidst a bursting global commodity bubble.

The monetary authority estimated the overall budget deficit in 2008 to be around 7.0 percent of gross domestic product, despite falls in revenues and increases in expenditure, in a report released today hours ahead of the government’s 2009 budget.

However the estimates on the Central Bank report on recent economic developments and revised outturns presented in the budget by the finance mini