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Minister Amunugama asks if SL is ready for transformation


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Addressing the annual sessions of the Organisation of Professional Associations (OPA), last week, Minister of Science, Technology, Research, Skills Development, and Vocational Training and Kandyan Heritage Dr. Sarath Amunugama posed the question whether Sri Lanka is ready for the transformation that the world is going through. The Minister was addressing this convention representing the President who was unable to attend due to his presence at the UN General Assembly sessions. 

Dr. Amunugama pointed out to the gathering that the present age is one of disruption – in the better and newer sense of the word. The old is yielding place to the new, not gradually but in revolutionary change, disrupting the old ways of doing things.Rapid disruptive change is everywhere the minister said – in technology, in politics, in trade and generally in the way things are done. Change is so rapid the Minister said that Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest man and the founder and CEO of Amazon is planning three years ahead and not managing day-to-day affairs in his business empire. 

The Minister said that we must adapt to this situation without being the sick man of Asia, when even former backward countries like Bangladesh are forging ahead. He pointed out that Korea which was earlier referred to derisively,was now an affluent country that everyone takes notice of. He said we have become the sick man of Asia because we don’t take proper decisions.

The Minister called upon the OPA to take a leading role in this transformation of discarding old ways of thinking and working and preparing the country for disruptive change. He particularly referred to the urgent need to examine the working of state entities like public corporations and revolutionise their working, using digitalisation and other modern technology.


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