Sri Lanka asks donors to cut redtape and coordinate aid for bigger projects

ComBank MD S. Renganathan (Centre) introducing the app to CB Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy in the presence of (from L) ComBank Manager - Card Centre Seevali Wickramasinghe, Head of Card Centre Thusitha Suraweera, Deputy GM – Marketing Hasrath Munasinghe, CB Assistant Governor Ananda Jayalath and CB Director - Payments & Settlements Dharmasri Kumaratunge

Sri Lanka’s foreign donors are falling over themselves to channel aid to similar projects, but a lots needs to be done to co-ordinate and channel assistance to large projects, the island’s treasury secretary said Friday. Sri Lanka’s foreign donors are falling over themselves to channel aid to similar projects, but a lots needs to be done to co-ordinate and channel assistance to large projects, the island’s treasury secretary said Friday. The Indian Ocean island gets over a billion dollars in aid each year from multilateral, bilateral and international non-governmental organizations.

The tsunami-hit island also raised over US$ 3 billion in pledges from international donors to rebuild key infrastructure along its damaged coastline.

But quite a number of aid projects are centered on similar themes – health, education etc – few go into creating big-ticket projects like roads and railroads.

“Sri Lanka is fortunate to have an abundance of international donors. Their intensions are good. But they do a lot of small projects in the range of US$ 100 million to US$ 150 million, very often on similar themes like health and nutrition,” treasury secretary P B Jayasundara said during the launch of a World Bank sponsored re