not-rebooting-economy-through-'painkillers',-says-sri-lanka-president-–

not-rebooting-economy-through-'painkillers',-says-sri-lanka-president

Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickermesinghe said on Sunday (February 5) that he is repairing debt-rideen South Asian nations economy by tackling ‘root cause’ and noy just by administering ‘painkillers. He asserted that systemic change and national unity along with economic reforms were needed to bring prosperity back to the country.

President Wickremesinghe made these comments through a series of tweets a day after Sri Lanka celebrated its 75th Independence Day.

Last year, Sri Lanka was in the grips of an unprecedented financial crisis. The foreign exchange reserves were at alarmingly low level. This had led to political turmoil in the country. The result was the ouster of powerful Rajapaksa family from top positions of the government. 

“I’m not treating the superficial condition with painkillers. I am treating the root cause of the malaise. Many of the decisions I have been compelled to take are unpopular, but because of these, no citizen will die in queues or starve,” Wickremesinghe tweeted.

I’m not treating the superficial condition with painkillers. I am treating the root cause of the malaise. Many of the decisions I have been compelled to take are unpopular, but because of these, no citizen will die in queues or starve.

— Ranil Wickremesinghe (@RW_UNP) February 5, 2023

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From April to July last year, chaos reigned supreme in Sri Lanka, with miles-long queues forming at fuel stations and irate residents coming out in thousands blocking roads.

The Sri Lankan government in May last year declared a debt default on over USD 51 billion in the foreign loans — a first in the country’s history.

“Despite obstacles, I will continue with the reforms. If we work in a united and planned manner, we can be a developed country by 2048. True freedom can be achieved and our collective responsibility is to build a new country where our children can compete with the rest of the world,” he tweeted.

“While we celebrate the 75th anniversary of our independence & honour those who worked hard for the country’s freedom, let us focus on regaining the freedom we have lost today,” he said in another tweet.

Wickremesinghe lamented that politicians borrowed for consumption and not for investment, which was the reason for the collapse of Sri Lanka’s economy. He did not name anyone.

(With inputs from agencies)

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