Updated: July 31, 2022 09:34 IST
columbus [Sri Lanka]Jul 31 (ANI): Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Sunday that unrest had delayed a possible deal with the International Monetary Fund to help lift the bankrupt nation out of its economic crisis and urged parties politicians to work together to find permanent solutions. to the problems facing Sri Lanka.
He further said that there is no point in blaming former President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for the economic crisis, instead he urged all political parties to unite to pull the country out of economic chaos and pay off the debt.
Speaking in Kandy, a city in Sri Lanka on Saturday, Ranil Wickremesinghe said a deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will not fully solve Sri Lanka’s problems, the Colombo Gazette reported.
Sri Lanka needs to find ways to repay its loans, he said.
During his speech, the President highlighted that the protests had delayed a possible agreement with the IMF that was moving forward after he took office as Prime Minister.
However, he said negotiations stalled due to instability in the island nation over the past few weeks as rioters stormed the nation amid dire fuel and food shortages.
Wickremesinghe stated that he can now reach an agreement after the end of August and also reiterated that other countries are not willing to offer financial assistance to the island until an agreement with the IMF is reached, the Colombo Gazette reported.
The president said that Sri Lanka needs to find ways to repay its loans as the IMF will not fully solve the problems facing the country, he added.
According to the Sri Lankan administration, 27,900 people took to the streets in search of work in the month of June this year.
The Sri Lanka Overseas Employment Office reported that 9,854 people have gone abroad to seek work through the licensed Overseas Employment Agency. It goes on to detail how more than 1.5 lakh people have left the country since January this year. He further added that most Sri Lankans prefer to go to the Gulf countries. Others move to countries like South Korea and Japan.
The Sri Lankan economy is braced for a sharp contraction due to the unavailability of basic inputs for production, an 80% depreciation of the currency since March 2022, coupled with a lack of foreign exchange reserves and the country’s default of its international debt obligations.
Hundreds of Sri Lankans continue to queue at petrol stations across the indebted country every day amid fuel shortages, and scores of people are trading in their cars and motorcycles for bikes for their daily commute.
The economic crisis, which is the worst in Sri Lanka’s history, has led to severe shortages of essential items such as fuel. (AND ME)