March 03, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka will continue to liberalise foreign
exchange controls to encourage the investments needed to maintain high
economic growth, Central bank governor Nivard Cabraal said. “The thinking now is to try to have faster growth for which we need
more savings and investment which, if not available in our own
country, we must get from outside,” he said.
“What we are setting out is exchange liberalisation in a gradual
manner – gradually giving confidence to outside and local investors,”
he told a forum on liberalizing foreign exchange controls organized by
the Shippers’ Academy Colombo.
“In the next few years we will need to bring in new reforms. We have
not gone too fast, nor have we gone too slow. We have been not too hot
or too cold, not too hard or too soft. We will apply those principles
in foreign exchange regulations.”
Cabraal said in 2008 there was a sudden exit of capital from Sri Lanka
because of global conditions.
“People wanted to take money out and we allowed it. We did not impose
any constraints. As a result they were very confident and when things
turned normal they came back. Today we have three billion US dollars
in Treasury Bills a