Sri Lanka Treasury chief backs free trade

Aug 31, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s finance secretary, a key policy maker in the current administration has backed freer trade which can improve people’s liberties and propel the country on a higher growth path. Sri Lanka has seen flourishing free trade from during the times of ancient kings.

Jayasundera said the country was looking forward to high growth after the war and planning to double per capita income to around 4,000 dollars. He said economic liberalization has laid the foundation for private sector laid growth.

“The economic transformation that has taken place between 1990 and 2010 is a result of a series of policy initiatives that have been implemented by successive governments,” he said.

“During 1980-2000 successive governments followed policies favoring liberalization and privatization.

“The trade and payments liberalization that has taken place throughout the 20-year period has made Sri Lanka’s economy more liberal and globally integrated.

“Exports are virtually tax free and the average import duty rate has been reduced to around 4.0 percent from over 10 percent prior to 1990.”

Sri Lanka and India has also drawn up an expanded free trade deal, which has been opposed b