- President Gotabaya to chair Cabinet Sub-Committee
- State Ministers named to assist work of Sub-Committee
- SL has already imposed ban on imports deemed non-essential
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa will chair a high-powered ministerial committee consisting of both Cabinet and State Ministers, whose task is to promote investments for import substitution and exports in line with President’s ‘Saubhagya Dakma’ election manifesto.
The Cabinet Sub-Committee comprises of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa who is also the Finance Minister, Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda, Transport Minister Gamini Lokuge, Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardane, Power Minister Dallas Alahapperuma, Highways Minister Johnston Fernando Industries Minister Wimal Weerawansa, Environment Minister Mahinda Amaraweera, Lands Minister S.M. Chandrasena, Water Supply Minister Vasudewa Nanayakkara, Energy Minister Udaya Gammanpila,
Plantations Minister Ramesh Pathirana, Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga, Ports and Shipping Minister Rohitha Abeygunawardhana and Justice Minister Ali Sabri .
State Ministers Ajith NivardCabraal (Money, Capital Markets and SOE Reform), Duminda Dissanayake (Solar, Wind and Hydropower), Jayantha Samarweera (Warehouse, Container Yards, Port Supplies, Boats and Shipping Industry Development), Dilum Amunugama (Vehicle Regulation, Bus Transport, Train Compartments and Motorcar Industry), D.V. Chanaka (Aviation and Export Zones), and Nalaka Godahewa (Urban Development, Coast Conservation, Water Disposal and Community Cleanliness), have been selected to assist work of the Sub-Committee.
Under President Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka is trying to build a strong domestic economy, assisting local industries and discouraging imports, which are deemed non-essential.
Sri Lanka has a serious currency problem and large external debt obligations running into US$ 4 to US$ 4.5 billion per annum for the next few years with inadequate foreign reserves.
Expert committee for new National Trade Policy
The Cabinet of Ministers has given its nod to appoint an expert committee representative of all relevant stakeholders to form a new National Trade Policy for Sri Lanka. Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardena presenting a Cabinet memo in this regard said it has been observed that the incumbent National Trade Policy, which was approved in 2017 has certain shortcomings as a result of not consulting all relevant stakeholders during its formation.
He said the expert committee is expected to take into account the current developments when designing the new trade policy.