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Sunday, 15 May 2011





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Treasury Secretary meets business community

Secretary to the Treasury Dr. P.B. Jayasundera said that our country has achieved eight percent growth last year for the first time in 40 years and that that growth was not by accident. It was by a deliberate set of actions.

He was addressing the business community at the SME Sri Lanka Forum held recently at the Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel.

From left, Commissioner Inland Revenue Mallika Samarasekera, Secretary to the Treasury Dr. P.B. Jayasundera, President, National Chamber of Commerce Asoka Hettigoda and Director General Customs Sudharma Karunaratne.

The forum was organised by the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (NCCSL) and the Treasury.

Dr Jayasundera told the business community that the government was making every effort to develop the SME sector as a significant contributor to the country's GDP.

The end of terrorism brought the country to a healthy situation which none expected. Government expenditure has come down tremendously. The private sector has benefited and their security-related expenses have also dropped.

There has not been a power crisis during the last five years and there will not be in the next 10 years because the Government has launched massive infrastructure development initiatives - in power generation, port development, irrigation, road development, water supply, telecommunications, schools and hospitals and environment.

Safeguards have been brought into our economic policies through the new policy regime that the President introduced through the Mahinda Chinthana.

Although there was resistance from our society, international community and financial agencies, our policies have brought very good results. Due to the effective policies the government has taken, the effect of the world financial crisis on our economy was minimised.

Cesses to support local entrepreneurs and incentives have been given at the request of the private sector.

The President gives leadership to a Government that takes decisions at the right time - sensible and meaningful decisions, regardless of practices other countries persue. In the next five years we expect the country to achieve $ 4,000 per capita income and to become a middle income country.

The Government made far-reaching changes to the tax system. "As a result everybody here will benefit.

Many of you are enjoying either the relief of PAYE, the relief of corporate tax reductions, the reduction of NBTs, removal of certain taxes, or consolidation between provincial and national taxes.

These are some of the far reaching changes the Government has made" Dr. Jayasundera said.

President, NCCSL Asoka Hettigoda said that the Chamber's aim in organising the forum was to develop the SME sector and upgrade the rural economy.



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