Colombo, Nov 8 (NIA) – Sri Lanka’s budget for 2017 will reduce the cost of living and strengthen investments in the island country, Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said here on Tuesday.
In a statement, Karunanayake said that the 2017 Budget, which will be presented to Parliament on Nov 10, will be a pro-growth budget which will focus on the deficiencies for the last several years.
Accordingly the budget would have proposals to rectify all the anomalies that are there to deal with export sector to create jobs.
“It will be a real over view and over look of all the sectors of the economy that is beneficial to the people in the short run and long run,” the Minister said.
He added that the economy inherited from the previous government faced a Rs 9.9 trillion public debt besides Rs 1.2 trillion debt off the balance sheet.
“However, with strict financial discipline, the government was able to pay attention on the financial consolidation and reducing the budget deficit,” Karunanayake said.
He further said that the government targets a fiscal deficit of 3.5 percent of GDP by 2020 where it has planned to reduce it to 4.7 percent next year from a targeted 5.4 Percent in 2016
The value of the GDP has increased to Rs 11,183 Billion (US$ 82.3 B) in 2015 from Rs.6,414 Billion (US$ 56.7B) in 2010. Sri Lanka has a new phenomenon in its expenditure chain where a sizeable portion goes to social welfare and subsidies.
The next year’s budget will allocate around Rs 380 billion on welfare and subsidies.