The United States Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Julie Chung last Friday stressed that the political stability is critical to undertake lasting and decisive structural reforms in addressing the root causes of the current economic crisis.
“It will take creativity, leadership, determination, and compromise to resolve this economic crisis. It also requires political stability and urgent action. Now is the time to redouble our joint efforts to get Sri Lanka back on the path to economic stability. Now more than ever the private sector can make a difference in creating a more inclusive and sustainable economy,” she said.
Chung was addressing the 183rd Annual General Meeting of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce last week.
She averred that the country can no longer delay the required economic and political reforms with stop-gap measures while stressing that economic reform needs to be intertwined with political reform
in order to create a sustainable and prosperous economy for all of Sri Lanka’s people.
“The reform measures Sri Lanka adopts need to address the root causes of this crisis so that the country finally makes lasting and decisive structural reforms that enshrine international standards of good governance and transparency for the benefit of all Sri Lankans. There is no more room for stop-gap measures,” she said.
Last week, a high-level delegation representing the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Department of State visited the country to explore the most effective ways for the United States to support Sri Lankans in need, Sri Lankans working to resolve the current economic crisis, and Sri Lankans planning for a sustainable and inclusive economy for the future. The Deputy Assistant Secretaries Robert
Kaproth of Treasury and Ambassador Kelly Keiderling of State met with a wide range of political representatives, economists, and international organizations.
“The delegation also pressed upon the government the need to negotiate urgently with its creditors and the IMF to finalize an assistance package, in order to ease the suffering of the Sri Lankan people and get the economy back on track as quickly as possible,” Chung noted.
She assured us that the United States continues to stand by Sri Lanka during these challenging times.
Over the last few weeks, the United States has announced $120 million in financing for Sri Lankan small and medium-sized businesses, $27 million for the Sri Lankan dairy industry, and over $30 million in new humanitarian, technical, and food security assistance to benefit Sri Lanka’s most vulnerable communities.
“We look forward to building on that assistance in the months to come. The United States remains
a friend and partner for Sri Lanka’s prosperity, and I look forward to our shared future and
success in overcoming the present-day challenges,” she said.