Sri Lanka is to enter into a standby arrangement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in case of a crisis situation in the Middle East as a result of the machinations of ISIS terrorists next year, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe informed Parliament today.
“It is better for Sri Lanka to be prepared for a crisis situation in the Middle East if the conflict caused by the ISIS worsens in 2016," the Prime minister said speaking during the second reading debate on the Budget while highlighting the fact that Sri Lanka would be adversely affected in such an eventuality.
He said 2016 will be an year of uncertainty globally with the economic growth in many countries expected to be stalled.
The Prime Minister invited all political parties to join the government to convert Sri Lanka into a high income-earning country by 2036. "We will be failing our future generations if we cannot achieve this goal," he said.
The Prime Minister told Parliament that the government had decided to do away with the budget proposal to merge the EPF and the ETF and handover its administration to a new body. He once again emphasised that the two funds would not be merged and that they would be administered by the Central Bank as before.
However he said new laws will be brought in to give more legal protection to EPF and ETF as it is in many countries.
Also he informed that the Right to information Bill and a motion to convert Parliament into a constitutional assembly will be brought in earlier next year. He said the Audit Bill will also be presented to House before long. (Yohan Perera)