SJB renews challenge to NPP for debate on economy

Tuesday, 2 April 2024 01:53 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

  • SJB MP Harsha de Silva says despite various claims by certain political parties debt once restructured cannot be renegotiated once more
  • Stresses failure to execute restructuring could result in collapse of the country 
  • Highlights importance of prioritising nation’s interests over political agendas
  • SJB MP Nalin Bandara says NPP’s proposals for economy and debt restructuring lack practicality
  • Questions NPP’s competency in implementing their proposals as it lacks a capable team 

The main Opposition party, the Samagi Jana Balawegaya (SJB), re-issued its challenge to the National People’s Power (NPP) for a debate on the economy, proposing a showdown between the two parties’ economic councils.

Addressing a press conference over the weekend, SJB MP Harsha de Silva slammed the NPP for its comments critical of the SJB and said the NPP has avoided the party’s invitation extended by SJB MP Nalin Bandara on seven separate occasions. 

The MP commenting on certain statements made by the NPP on the IMF and debt restructuring process, stressed that while debt restructuring is an exceedingly intricate process that necessitates the consent of the country, and once an agreement is reached, it cannot be revisited. 

“Once an agreement is reached, it’s impossible to renegotiate with the creditors. Our aim is to uplift the country from its current state,” he said. 

The MP emphasised that in the restructuring of the debt, the responsibility to repay falls upon the succeeding Government that assumes power. The MP underscored that failing to execute this restructuring could result in another collapse of the country’s economy, a scenario that must be averted at all costs. “The NPP’s statement of paying the debts whenever possible is highly alarming for the international financial markets. Declarations like these diminish our country’s prospects for progress. Hence, it’s imperative for both parties to engage in a direct debate on the country’s economy,” he remarked.

De Silva stressed the importance of prioritising the nation’s interests over political agendas. De Silva emphasised that the SJB harbours no intention of jeopardising the country’s stability for political gain. He stressed the importance of successful negotiations with creditors for the sake of the nation.

Also addressing the press conference SJB MP Nalin Bandara said that NPP’s Sunil Handunetti has claimed the party will undertake debt restructuring, although specifics on the restructuring plan have not been disclosed yet. 

Bandara criticised the NPP asserting that their proposals for strengthening the country’s economy and debt restructuring lack practicality. He further questioned the competency of the NPP in implementing their proposals due to a perceived lack of a capable team.