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Sri Lanka risks dipping in economic freedom index

Sri Lanka’s economic freedom has been threatened by the arbitrary actions taken by president Maithripala Sirisena when he decided to remove the democratically elected Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Cabinet of Ministers and replacing them with former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa and his allies. 

As result of this act, the country’s public sector services came to a standstill with the bureaucracy adopting a wait and see attitude without carrying out directives issued by the president, new prime minister and his cabinet of ministers. 

The country‘s public machinery came to a grinding halt for more than one month following current political impasse instigated by the president, official sources confirmed.

Under this set up, president Sirisena has advised all Ministry Secretaries today (04) to continue all public services without any delays and interruptions according to the existing law. 

Amidst this economic turmoil, Sri Lanka’s economic freedom index for 2018 has pushed the country to the 111th position out of 186 countries. 

The Index published by The Heritage Foundation, Washington's No. 1 think tank covers 12 freedoms – from property rights to financial freedom – in 186 countries. Sri Lanka’s economic freedom score is 57.8, making its economy the 111th freest according to the 2018 index. Its overall score has increased by 0.4 points, with improvements in investment freedom, business freedom, and judicial effectiveness outweighing a lower score for fiscal health. Sri Lanka is ranked 25th among 43 countries in the Asia–Pacific region, and its overall score is below the regional and world averages.

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