NCE calls for decisive action by Govt. over recent civil unrest

Tuesday, 13 March 2018 00:45 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The National Chamber of Exporters (NCE) in a statement yesterday (12 March) said it was deeply concerned regarding the civil unrest which prevailed in certain parts of the country recently.   

The Chamber said it is strongly of the view that the actions of certain elements, which led to the recent civil unrest, would have been backed by groups with extremist political ideologies, who have as their objective disruption of economic activities, and the wellbeing of the ordinary citizens of our country, to achieve their parochial and selfish aims, without any regard to the future of our country. 

The Chamber emphasised the fact that international trade, particularly exports and related investments, is the lifeblood of our country to achieve economic development objectives, for the future prosperity of all citizens.  In this context, and at a time the Government is engaged, through public-private partnerships and sound international relationships, in acceleration of economic development, it is vital that the wrong message is not conveyed to the external world regarding the peace and stability that has been built up since the 2009 conclusion of the protracted 30 year civil conflict, which caused untold economic damage and set-back to the aspirations of all peace-loving citizens who wish to live in harmony to secure their future. 

The Chamber further stated that it was very disconcerting that this civil unrest, although short-lived, occurred at a time the country was embarking on trade negotiations to establish several Free Trade and Economic Partnership Agreements with important partner countries, to facilitate trade and especially exports, to achieve national economic development targets, because the success of these trade deals depends upon other things, attraction of foreign investments to the country which in turn depends on peace, economic, and political stability.

In this context , the Chamber urged that the Government acts decisively to give a strong message to all, and especially to the trade partners of the country overseas, that there will be no room in the future for such civil unrest.  For this purpose, the Chamber called upon the Government to act without any delay on the following, to restore the confidence and goodwill of all concerned. 

1. Dispense quick and firm punishment to all those who were directly or indirectly responsible for the unrest, to deter any such actions in the future.

2.Provide full compensation to all those who were affected to rebuild their businesses and lives, to enable integration back to society in a meaningful manner without hard feelings.

NCE is the premier Chamber in the forefront of the private sector for the promotion and development of exports from Sri Lanka for overall national benefit.