Sri Lankan industrialists concerned about slowing economic growth

July 11, 2007 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s top industrialists have expressed concern over the noticeable slowing down of economic growth and delays in legislating protection for local industries under new world trade rules. “Rural development is essential for growth and stability must come mainly from business linkages – not handouts.”
Industry needs better access to finance and infrastructure, he also said. “We’re concerned about the consistent decline in economic growth quarter by quarter, although the economic growth rate remains high,”
Anura Ekanayake, chairman of the Industrial Association of Sri Lanka said Tuesday.

“Growth slowed to just over six percent in the first quarter of 2007 compared with eight percent in the first quarter of 2006,” he told the association’s annual general meeting.

Focusing on the industrial sector performance, he said it grew by 7.2 percent in 2006, lower than the 8.3 percent growth achieved in 2005.

The sector’s growth rate in the first quarter of 2007 had dropped further to six percent.

The output of factory industries, which grew 6.2 percent in 2005, fell to 5.9 percent in 2006, said Ekanayake, who was re-elected chairman of the association.

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