COLOMBO (NewsRadio); Vice-President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Shixin Chen has assured support to the steps taken by President Ranil Wickremesinghe to seek international assistance to solve the economic crisis.
ADB Vice-President Shixin Chen noted the measures that are being taken to contain the crisis and address its underlying causes, and supported the steps taken to seek international assistance during a meeting with President Wickremesinghe in Colombo.
The ADB said in a statement that Vice-President Chen briefed the President on ADB’s emergency response to the crisis, especially in addressing immediate needs such as essential medical supplies, materials for water treatment, fertilizer, and working capital for small and medium-sized enterprises by repurposing from ongoing ADB-funded projects. In response to the food situation in the country, ADB supported the poor and vulnerable of Sri Lanka with direct financial support while boosting livelihood development activities and agricultural production and enhancing social protection systems.
In addition, through the Trade and Supply Chain Finance Program, ADB has provided guarantees to help critical international trade to continue.
“ADB is deeply concerned about the effects of the ongoing economic crisis on the poor and vulnerable sections, including women, of Sri Lankan society, particularly its long-term impact to people’s lives,” said Vice-President Chen. “ADB is a trusted development partner of Sri Lanka, and we are working closely with authorities as well as other development partners to address immediate needs and plan future assistance.
Vice-President Chen has also highlighted the need and called for deep, meaningful, and sustained structural reforms to address long-standing macroeconomic vulnerabilities, promote private sector development and to support renewable energy development.
Vice-President Chen underscored the importance of strengthening macroeconomic management, improving governance, addressing structural constraints, and enhancing social protection system for sustained and inclusive recovery.
During his visit, ADB Vice-President Chen also met with Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Secretary to the Treasury Mahinda Siriwardana, and Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka Nandalal Weerasinghe.
At the invitation of President Wickremesinghe, Vice-President Chen participated at the high-level round table discussion on structural reform for economic recovery and sustainable growth along with representatives from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank.
The government’s reform agenda was discussed along with proposed policy directions, reform priorities, other interventions, and future collaboration and support from international partners.