Money and Capital Market State Minister State Minister Nivard Cabraal has urged that Sri Lanka needs to take sensible action, when dealing with and implementation of lockdowns, as it has a major impact on the economy of the country.
He commented saying that economies were not designed for lockdowns, but rather for continuous progress and development. The sporadic lockdowns and halting of business activities and other important economic activities will have severe, long term implications on the economic progress of Sri Lanka. Cabraal made these comments while addressing the Sri Lanka Investment Forum.
Thus far, the following costs have been incurred in order to manage the health crisis.
- Rs. 131 billion has been spent on COVID control
- concessionary loans worth Rs. 168 billion, has been provided as working capital support
- a debt moratorium worth Rs. 4 trillion, or 33% of the domestic loan portfolio of the country has been issued, to help businesses stay afloat during the pandemic.
He commented saying that lockdowns should only be considered a temporary measure. He added that businesses should continue to function, even with lockdowns in place. However, while operating such businesses, firm measures must be taken to adhere to health guidelines outlined by the health authorities in the country.