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Apparel companies, private sector enterprises unable to pay salaries: Harsha

18 May 2020 - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}      

  • Banks do not have funds to provide loans to companies 

By Yohan Perera   

Revealing that some 52 apparel companies and other private sector enterprises had stated that they cannot afford to pay salaries to their employees, former non-Cabinet Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva yesterday called for out of the box thinking to resolve these matters. 

Dr. Silva told a press conference that around 52 apparel companies have stated that they cannot afford to pay salaries. He said this quoting Joint Apparel Sector Forum (JAF) chief who had publicly stated that 52 apparel companies alone had said they cannot afford to pay salaries.   

“JAF chief had said the main reason is that banks do not have funds to provide loans to the companies as stipulated by the government. Therefore, one must practice the proposal of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa of practicing out of the box thinking,” Dr Silva said.   

He, therefore, proposed that treasury guarantees should be provided to the banks so that they could provide loans to the companies.   

Also, he said concessions should be given on electricity bills. Power consumption had increased during the past two months as public and private sector workers and some of the school children work from home since the lockdown was introduced after the outbreak of COVID-19.   

An amalgamated bill for two months has been sent to many consumers. This is hardly affordable. However, a proposal introduced by the Public Utilities Commission to allow the payment of bills in two installments is welcome.