Sri Lanka
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IMF bailout package has unlocked new path to create better future for youth and uplift the country – President

by Administrator

Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremesinghe in Parliament

Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe said the International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout package has unlocked a new path to create a better future for the youth and uplift the country.

On March 20, 2023, the IMF announced that the IMF Executive Board approved Sri Lanka’s USD 2.9 billion bailout package under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF).

Making a special statement in Parliament today (March 22), Sri Lankan President said that at a time when the country was in chaos in July last year, no one was willing to accept responsibility and that he was requested to take over.

“I had no power in Parliament, and no MPs from my Party to call my own.” However, the President said his strength was his conviction that he was capable of rebuilding the country.

He told the Parliament today that the bailout of USD 3 Billion will be provided across four years and the first tranche is USD 333 million.

The President said that an immediate disbursement of USD 330 Million was received by Sri Lanka from the IMF, noting immediate facilities to the tune of USD 7 Billion will be available from the World Bank, IMF, International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and multilateral organisations.

“The government aims to reduce the primary deficit to 2.3% of GDP by 2025 and increase revenue to 14% of GDP by 2026. The standard corporate income tax rate has been raised to 30%, and sectoral tax holidays have been eliminated. The PAYE tax rate has been raised from 12% to 15%, and the tax exemption limit has been reduced from Rs. 300 million to Rs. 80 million,” President said.

He said that local banks will once again be recognized globally, as Sri Lanka will no longer be considered as a bankrupt nation.