World Economy Health Check: Mixed Bag of Prospects in 2012 By Chandana Karunaratne, Research Assistant - IPSThe world economy is in for a tumultuous 2012. The euro zone is going through a turbulent period as it seeks a sustainable solution to its sovereign debt crisis, and analysts forecast a rather dismal GDP growth rate of 1.8% for the USA in 2012.1 The decline of these two economic powerhouses is likely ...

India’s Middle Class Boom: Sri Lanka Must Cash In By Anushka Wijesinha (Research Economist) and Burhanudheen Thassim (Project Intern) - IPSIndian middle-class consumption set to be 3rd highest globally by 2020Sri Lanka currently exports only 5.6% of its total exports to IndiaForbes Magazine’s Rich List reports that India is home to 50 Dollar Billionaires, with 2 in the Top 10. Most people associate India’s ‘wealthy’ with the well-known names ...

Mainstreaming Migration into the Development Process - Budget 2012 Takes Vital Steps By Roshini Jayaweera and Priyanka Jayawardena (Research Officers – IPS)In 2010, total foreign remittances increased by 23.6% and amounted to US dollars 4,116 million1, thereby crowning remittances, personified by the migrant worker, to the foremost foreign exchange earner for the Sri Lankan economy. At present, 23% of the total labour force (1.8 million) is engaged in foreign employment2. The 2012 ...

Sri Lanka as a Rice Exporting Country: Possibilities and Problems Dr. Parakrama Samaratunga, Research Fellow – IPSThe Budget 2012 presented last month touches on agriculture at several points. However, the proposal to establish “four rice export zones” stands out as the most provocative, in an economic sense, amongst all of them. Sri Lanka has just achieved near self-sufficiency in rice. But the rice sector, including both production and consumption, is ...

SMEs and Budget 2012: Strong Steps, but Tax Relief is Half the Story By Anushka Wijesinha, Research Economist – IPSMinistry of Finance has delivered, now time for SME-mandated government institutions to sharpen their focus and address the vital issues Budget 2012 is clearly the most SME-friendly budget in recent years. A comprehensive set of tax and financial proposals, specifically intended to strengthen and develop the SME sector have been put forward in the ...

Sri Lanka Grapples with Child Malnutrition despite Major Improvements   in the Health Sector By Priyanka Jayawardena, Research Officer - IPSDespite remarkable achievements in the health sector, malnutrition has been a persistent health challenge in Sri Lanka. More than 1 in 5 under-five year olds are underweight in the country. Nearly 1 in 6 babies born has a low birth weight. These numbers are worse for some population groups in the country. Children in ...

Electricity Constraints: Can CEB Profits Lighten the Burden on the   Industrial Sector? By Buddhika Brahmanage, Research Assistant - IPSElectricity: Continued Constraint for Sri Lankan IndustriesSpeak to any major industrialist in Sri Lanka, and they will tell you that electricity is a critical constraint on their operations. A forthcoming World Bank report entitled ‘More and Better Jobs in South Asia’ reports results from country-level Enterprise Surveys that shows that electricity is the number ...

Repositioning South Asia: A Positive Look By Stephanie De Mel and Anushka Wijesinha – IPSThis week (Oct. 22-23), in Dhaka, Bangladesh, policymakers, economists, SAARC officials and diplomats will come together for the 4th South Asia Economic Summit (SAES), following on from the first three held in Colombo, Delhi, and Katmandu. The theme this year for the SAES is: ‘Global Recovery, New Risks and Sustainable Growth: Repositioning ...

Post-conflict Growth: Making it Inclusive The IPS launched its ‘Sri Lanka: State of the Economy 2011’ report yesterday (19th October 2011) at its first Annual National Conference at the IPS Auditorium, in the presence of two Senior Ministers of the Cabinet. This year’s report has as its theme ‘Post-conflict Growth: Making it Inclusive’. In this post, we bring you some extracts of the ‘Policy Perspectives’ ...

Dynamic Growth in Sri Lanka: the Innovation Imperative By Anushka Wijesinha, Research Economist – IPSInnovation is beyond research, it requires clever commercializationSri Lanka needs to take a 360 degree approach to innovation policyAs Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs bids adieu to an ipod/iphone/ipad/macbook crazed world, it brought to the fore how much technological innovation has touched the lives of millions, and become so important in this new dynamic global ...

By Roshini Jayaweera (Research Officer - IPS)In considering issues of poverty in Sri Lanka, Batticaloa is conspicuous as a district that requires particular attention. In addition to being identified as the country’s poorest district in 2009/10, it is also one of two districts for which poverty statistics actually increased between 2006/07 and 2009/10.1 According to the latest Household Income and ...

Sri Lanka Continues its Rise up Global Competitiveness Index: Jumps 10   Ranks in 2011-12 World Economic Forum Report Ranks just 2 below the Top 50 WEF warns against complacency, biz community expectations will evolve as country developsBy Anushka Wijesinha (Research Economist) and Dilani Hirimuthugodage (Research Officer) – IPS*The World Economic Forum today (7th September) released its latest Global Competitiveness Report (2011-2012), which reports that Sri L

Guest Article by Prof. Mick Moore*Institute of Development Studies (IDS), University of Sussex, UKIn our first guest article on ‘Talking Economics’, British political-economist and taxation specialist, Prof. Mick Moore, argues that, as developing countries strive to move away from their dependence on foreign aid, the discussion on the role of tax in development is getting renewed attention. ‘Taxation’ is being ...

Korea Calling: Results from a Snap Survey of Job Seekers and Issues of Youth Unemployment By Anushka Wijesinha (Research Economist), Roshini Jayaweera (Research Officer), Nethmini Perera (Research Assistant) and Nisha Arunatilleke (Research Fellow) – IPSOver 4,000 youth gathered along Havelock Road near the Police Field Force Headquarters on Monday to apply for jobs in South Korea, following an announcement by the government under a bilateral foreign e

Key Perspectives by Dr. Anura Ekanayake - Immediate Past Chairman of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and IPS Governing Board MemberBy Anushka Wijesinha, Research Economist - IPSIn this blog post, we bring to you some key quotes from the speech by Dr. Anura Ekanayake, member of the board of governors of the IPS and the outgoing Chairman of the country’s ...

By Ashani Abayasekara (Research Assistant)and Anushka Wijesinha (Research Economist) - IPSEconomic freedom measures have ranked Sri Lanka above its neighbours in the region, but below some of its key competitor countries. To improve the business environment by addressing problems such as transparency, accountability, etc., there needs to be a genuine effort to involve all stakeholders...

G.D. Dayaratne, Manager, Health Economic Policy Unit - IPSIn recent years there have been a number of developments in alcohol policies the world over. A noteworthy aspect in these is that the greatest public support is given to policy measures that are not seen as intruding on the moderate or occasional drinker and do not penalize the alcohol industry. For ...

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