National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka

national chamber of exporters of sri lanka


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NCE applauds people for their patience, support to obtain IMF EFF

The National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka (NCE) in a statement this week applauded the initiatives taken by the country and its people in securing the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

NCE also applauded the leaders who initiated the responsibility of rebuilding the country after the chaos that it underwent from April last year.

The NCE thanked the President and the Government for succeeding in this process of getting the approval for this IMF loan and the people amidst numerous hardships, bearing all kinds of pressure, and undergoing suffering with equanimity, the people of this country remained calm and patient. Their commitment was a great strength in achieving the IMF Facility, NCE added.

NCE in its statement also said the following. The long-awaited facility by the IMF is a step towards building a better future for the youth and uplifting the country, the facility will also restore Sri Lanka’s international recognition, ensure the country is not bankrupt and help banks regain international recognition as the country is expecting funds and support from World Bank and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) apart from the approximately $ 3 billion from the IMF facility over the next few years.

The IMF facility will create opportunities for low-interest credit, restore foreign investors’ confidence, and lay the foundation for a strong new economy. This would lead to an impact on the exchange rate and thereby the Cost of Production (COP), all manufacturing sectors will make adjustments and cope better as the exchange rate will be a fine balancing act between sustaining exports and reducing the COP.

With the resulting economic developments, foreign importers would have more confidence to import from Sri Lanka bringing more foreign exchange to the country and obtaining finance facility would be easier for local importers as the foreign banks will have more confidence to deal with local banks. Lifting up import restrictions will ease the raw material shortage for the local industries.

NCE President Jayantha Karunaratne said: “The EFF is just another loan but will help stabilise the economy and set a path to growth to create credibility and confidence for Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) and exports. NCE hopes and suggests the Government to increase its attention towards the exporters in the country as it is one of the biggest paths where the country can gain a lot of foreign exchange. According to projections made by the IMF for Sri Lanka, the country’s export revenue is expected to grow by over $ 16 billion by 2026 from $ 13 billion achieved in 2022.”

NCE Secretary General/CEO Shiham Marikar said: “The worst is over for the country for now, but the brain drain, which has been a major issue in most of the sectors, triggered by the migration is expected to continue in 2023 and ease in 2024. The Central Bank data showed that about 1.12 million Sri Lankans have left the country in 2022 while only 311,269 left for foreign employment. We also hope that the Government will have stable plans to improve the export sector in the country. NCE as a chamber that closely works with the exporters in the country will cooperate with its members to achieve higher goals in the future to deliver a better country. NCE welcomes reforms for financial discipline and to curb corruption which is part of the IMF facility and will encourage and support economic reforms, good governance, and the introduction of laws against corruption in line with UN conventions, strong fiscal policies and laws regarding foreign loans.”

Source: DailyFT