Boosting Sri Lanka’s Economy: India’s Investment Commitment

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Days after Delhi provided “financing assurances” to facilitate Colombo’s bailout package from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar announced on Friday that India will promote increased investments in the Sri Lankan economy.

The heavily indebted country is currently in discussions with the IMF to secure a US$ 2.9 billion bridge loan. In order to obtain this loan, Colombo is working to obtain financial assurances from its major creditors, including China, Japan, and India – a necessary step for receiving the bailout package.

“We chose not to wait for others, but to take action that we believe is right. We provided financing assurances to the IMF to pave the way for Sri Lanka to progress. Our hope is that this will not only strengthen Sri Lanka’s position but also ensure fair treatment of all bilateral creditors,” stated Jaishankar during his two-day visit to the neighboring country.

“India will promote increased investments in the Sri Lankan economy, particularly in key sectors such as energy, tourism, and infrastructure. We trust that the Sri Lankan government will create a more business-friendly environment to attract investment,” he added in a press release. “Sri Lanka’s path forward involves a robust economic recovery driven by greater investments,” he emphasized.

In addition to meeting with Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe, Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, and Foreign Minister Ali Sabry, Jaishankar also held discussions with former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, his brother Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and Opposition leader Sajith Premadasa.

“My main objective in visiting Colombo is to show India’s support for Sri Lanka during these challenging times,” Jaishankar remarked. “We had productive discussions following my meetings with my counterpart and other Sri Lankan ministers yesterday evening.”

India has provided approximately US$ 4 billion in credits and rollovers to assist Sri Lanka in navigating its economic difficulties. “Our priority was to prioritize our neighbor and not abandon a partner in need,” Jaishankar explained. An MoU was finalized for Indian assistance in implementing impactful community development projects focusing on socio-economic development, infrastructure, and education.

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