(MENAFN- Colombo Gazette)
The Asian Council’s Forum for Economic Cooperation, made up of regional leaders from across the continent, has urged Japan and South Korea to help Sri Lanka overcome the current economic crisis.
The island nation of 22 million is facing an unprecedented economic collapse with inflation in July hitting a record 60.8% and the country still facing severe shortages of food, fuel and medicine in a context of depletion of foreign exchange reserves.
“Since the end of last year, the country has run out of foreign exchange to finance even the most essential imports. For nearly a year, the people of Sri Lanka have endured great suffering. Aid from sovereign nations has so far been insufficient. A bailout deal with the IMF could last for months despite the urgent need,” the Asian Council said in a statement.
The Asia Council said that Sri Lanka is known for its excellent human development record, especially on the education and health front. It has a very productive demographic. The country posted robust economic growth through 2019.
With Japan and South Korea being Asia’s second and fourth largest economies, they are widely seen as the “vanguard” of prosperity on the continent.
To preserve the shrinking space for democratic values in Asia, it is imperative that Japan and South Korea help Sri Lanka stabilize its economy, undertake rapid reforms and strengthen its democratic institutions, the Council of Asia.
The Asia Council noted that the people of Sri Lanka certainly deserved a better and brighter future. (Colombo Official Gazette)
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