Sri Lanka needs balanced approach to urbanization: Min. Ranawaka

Oct 06, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s challenge is how to achieve a pace and pattern of urban development that is beneficial to people and how to make a balanced approach to urbanization, Minister Champika Ranawaka said.

“Urbanization has both positive and negative impacts on society,” the Minister of  Megapolis and Western Development said.

“It has resulted in increased employment opportunities, escalated standards of living and easier access to healthcare, education, transport facilities and entertainment.”

Addressing a capacity building programme for urban sector officials he pointed out that social integration took new heights in the urban society and that as a positive impact, the market size and the profits of the businesses increased.

“Better-quality infrastructure comparative to rural sector brought immense benefit to augment businesses,” he said.

However Ranawaka said on the down side the impact of urbanization brought about changes in consumption patterns which led to various health complications.

“Distortions took place in traditions and culture while crime rate skyrocketed to unprecedented heights.”

Urbanization  also had a negative impact on small scale industries and has made them lose their market share with the spreading tentacles of growing large scale companies, he added.

“Rising industrial sectors made agricultural businesses to take a back seat.”

He added that urbanization had substantial impacts on environment as well.

So he says Sri Lanka’s challenge is how to achieve a pace and pattern of urban development that is beneficial to people.

“We shall make sure that the future urban Sri Lanka shall be holistic and smart, but not be skewed, irresponsible and self-centered. I firmly believe that only this approach will lead us towards a smart, soft and super nation,” he said.