The Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS) will be hosting a Twitter Chat on its annual flagship report, ‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2017’ on Thursday, 14 December, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sri Lanka time).
An expert panel of IPS researchers will be available on Twitter during this time to answer questions from the general public under four broad thematic areas: (i) Trade, Tourism, and Economic Growth, (ii) Human Resource Development, (iii) Health and Human Development/Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and (iv) Green Economy and Sustainability. The IPS official Twitter account, @TalkEconomicsSL, will act as a moderator during the discussion. Anyone can pose questions to the panel using the hashtag #SOE2017.
In the ‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2017’, a primary constraint on growth is identified as the nation’s inadequate human resource pool of professional and technical skills. It notes that Sri Lanka’s labour market efficiency has to be improved by tackling two of the biggest limitations – its stringent employment protection laws and low female labour force participation rates. As such, the report focuses on ‘Demographics, Labour Markets and Growth’ as its main thematic area.
Other areas of policy priority to revive Sri Lanka’s medium term growth outlook from the current rate of 4.0-4.5 per cent highlighted in the report include education, health and human development, agriculture and land resource management, tourism, migration, and climate adaption, and disaster resilience.
As the report aptly points out, the implementation of reforms will depend on persuading government coalition partners that economic reform initiatives are designed with sufficient reference to the concerns of ordinary voters. If political indecision makes a reform effort less achievable, the evidence will begin to confirm that the probability of a sustained upswing for the Sri Lankan economy is dim. In view of the daunting medium-term debt financing challenges that Sri Lanka must prepare to meet, the country cannot afford to lose this opportunity to put its economic house in order.
‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2017’ – the flagship publication of the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS) can be purchased from the Publications Unit of the IPS, located at 100/20, Independence Avenue, Colombo 7. For more information, contact the Publications Unit on 0112143107/0112143100 or email [email protected]. Visit www.ips.lk for background on the report.