Home / Opinion and Issues/ SL must benchmark Mexico

SL must benchmark Mexico


Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Friday, 24 August 2018 00:00


 

  • 11 FTAs covering 46 countries: Dr. Athukorala at CSE

 The Country Head – Turner Investments (USA) who was the former chairman of Sri Lanka Export Development Board/Executive Director National Council for Economic Development (NCED) Dr. Rohantha Athukorala voiced that Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) hurt but it is the best way to drive economic growth in a country. “The best case in point is Mexico which has 11 FTAs covering 46 countries and today it is a 1.1 trillion dollar economy with export revenues crossing $ 409 billion but thus require strong and credible leadership,” he said. 

Dr. Athukorala was addressing the Toast Masters Club at Colombo Stock Exchange under the Patron of CSE CEO Rajeeva Bandaranayake on the topic ‘Building on perseverance’.

“Apparently during the year 2018 the ASPI is down 3.5% and the S7P SL 20 is down 9.5% as at 1 August, Colombo finishing the week lower on extremely low levels of total market turnover. With the average daily total market turnover of just $ 1.8 million challenges the break even level of a typical stock exchange,” voiced Dr. Athukorala, explaining further how the trend of foreign selling continuing means that the market is cheap and trading 10 times below earnings and at around 1.2 times book value in a typical week. “This means lack of interest in the market as a whole by investors; and the only way to push the momentum up is by driving stronger economic growth. For this we must connect with the global market via FTAs. Be it the FTA with Singapore and then the FTA with Thailand and China Sri Lanka but a point to note is that Sri Lanka must focus on the supply chain development given the issue of unemployment at a low ebb of 4%,” he cautioned. 

“But first we must give the private sector confidence by correcting the FTA issues with India which is struggling with non tariff barriers at the Indian end,” voiced the former Chairman of Sri Lanka Export Development Board. 

The Q1 Corporate earnings have so far been lacklustre, led by a 23% drop in profits by market driver John Keells Holdings (JKH) for the June quarter followed by a similar performance by Aitken Spence, Soft Logic who are all operating across sectors. Given the agitation of certain sectors the President appointed top economist WD Laxman to present his finding on the FTA with Singapore that was inked nine months ago. Exports registered an $ 11.5 billion last year with GDP growth at a low ebb of 3%. 


Share This Article


DISCLAIMER:

1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.

COMMENTS

Today's Columnists

Reaching global quality standards through Deming Award

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The importance of quality in the contemporary competitive business environment cannot be over-emphasised. Total Quality Management (TQM)is a company-wide, all pervasive management philosophy, which organisations globally, in many business sectors hav


Ramsar accreditation of Colombo Wetlands: Rebranding Colombo as a Wetland City

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Colombo, once known to be “kolonthota,” has always been identified as a wetland complex at the heart of the Kelani river delta. Today this city is increasingly drying up, with around 20 sq km left as wetlands which continue to be threatened every


Coup Sri Lanka: some winners, mostly losers

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

As a president proves shockingly stubborn, a nation waits with baited breath as to what His Excellency the loose cannon on a rocky slope will do next. Two Prime Ministers and the fates of their respective parliamentary groups hang in the balance lik


Rising dollar and bank NPA, brothers in arms?

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The rising Non-Performing Advances (NPA/NPAs) is a matter of concern to the entire financial industry. It is a nightmare. The weekend papers have published some articles based on interviews journalists conducted with respective bank CEOs and also bas


Columnists More