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MEDIA STATEMENT

The Ministry of External Affairs is surprised at some of the recent statements on the outcome of the case filed by the LTTE in 2011 at the General Court of the European Union in which the Council of the European Union was the defendant supported by the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the European Commission as interveners. These statements by interested parties are based on an inaccurate premise. 

 The Ministry of External Affairs wishes to state that from the outset of the case being filed, legal advice and expert opinion were sought from within the European Union system and specialist European lawyers. Accordingly, the Government of Sri Lanka took action in the most effective manner available, by providing material of a substantive nature to the defendant and the interveners on a regular basis. This was in accordance with Sri Lanka being a non-member state of the European Union and having therefore to meet special conditions, contrary to the national interest of Sri Lanka, in order to be allowed to intervene itself in cases before the General Court of the European Union.

Read more: MEDIA STATEMENT

 

“Sri Lanka – Emerging Economic Miracle in Asia”

  World Economic Forum Side Event

January 22, 2015 

Davos – Klosters, Switzerland 

Side  Event  Sri  Lanka  will  be  held  at  the  Steigenberger  Grandhotel  Belvédère, Promenade  89,  Davos,  Switzerland  on  Thursday  (January  22,  2015)  as  a  luncheon session at the room “Lounge East” from 12.30 to 14.00 hrs. 

The   Sri   Lankan   economy   has   achieved   substantial   progress   in   almost   all macroeconomic  fundamentals  in  recent  years.  The  economy  recorded  an  average growth of 7.5 per cent during 2010-2013 period. Inflation remains in single digits for well over 5 years. In 2014, the economy is projected to grow by 7.8 per cent, defying a regional slowdown as the Sri Lanka remains one of Asia’s best performing economies. 

Sri Lanka by 2020 would have a GDP of around US $ 150 billion, a US $ 7,000+ per capita income and sound macroeconomic fundamentals. Economic growth is targeted to average around 8 per cent from 2015 onwards. Inflation would continue at the lower end of mid-single digits and the current account at surplus with foreign reserves growing faster. 

The programme, luncheon session for 1 ½ hours,  will cover the presentation on “Sri Lanka – Emerging Economic Miracle in Asia” by the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) followed by Q & A session and walk-around discussion. The Sri Lankan  delegation  consist  of  representation  from  the  Central  Bank,  government agencies including Diplomatic Missions, members of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) representing large scale conglomerates operating in Sri Lanka and Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka.

 The presentation/ discussion will elaborate, in detail, the strategies envisaged for the 

  • macro-economic environment that need to be maintained, even in an uncertain global economic environment,
  • the continuation of the economic diversification programme, based on the ‘5 Hubs ++’ concept, 
  • country-wide infrastructure development programme to provide the necessary impetus for investments,
  • improvement in doing business environment, 
  • an investment grade sovereign rating, 
  • deeper and more liquid financial sector, 
  • productive labour force, and 
  • facilitation to the private sector to become even vibrant and global players. 

The CBSL look forward to seeing you all at the Steigenberger Grandhotel Belvédère, World Economic Forum Sri Lanka - Side Event on 22 January, 2015.

WEF Side Event in PDF....

 

Fijian Prime Minister expresses gratitude to Sri Lanka in maiden speech

Rear Admiral J.V. Bainimarama, the newly elected Prime Minister of Fiji has acknowledged the immense debt Fiji owes to Sri Lanka, in his inaugural speech on 13th October 2014 at the Parliament House in Suva, following the convincing victory of his Fiji First Party at the general elections held last month, in which it secured 59.2% of the popular vote. 

In his address to the Parliament, Prime Minister Bainimarama, while thanking the members of the Fijian Judiciary, judges and magistrates paid special tribute to Sri Lanka for providing an invaluable service by sending judges and magistrates at Fiji’s time of need. The Prime Minister stated: 

“I especially want to thank those individuals who head our institutions of State for the sacrifices they were prepared to make in the face of criticism, abuse and sanctions. Some of those whom we counted as our friends set out to degrade our standards of governance by targeting and punishing these individuals who accepted positions in the Judiciary, as Ministers and on the Boards of our State-Owned Enterprises. To those of you who withstood vilification and in some cases even death threats, I also extend my warmest thanks. I will never forget your loyalty to our nation, and our cause of building a better Fiji. 

I particularly thank the members of our Judiciary – the Judges and Magistrates headed by honourable Chief Justice, Anthony Gates, for being willing to stand up to international condemnation, so that the Fijian people could continue to access to justice. I especially thank those who came from Sri Lanka to join other Judges and Magistrates who stood by our nation when we needed them. Because of these heroes, the genuine rule of law in Fiji prevailed even during the most challenging times, and we owe you all an immense depth of gratitude. We owe an immense debt to the Government and President of Sri Lanka for facilitating their service to Fiji.” 

Note

Two Sri Lankans have taken leadership positions to serve on boards appointed by the Government, during the challenging times referred to in the Prime Minister’s speech, namely Mr. Ajith Kodagoda, the Honorary Consul for Sri Lanka in Fiji, who was appointed in 2009 as the Chairman of the Fiji National Provident Fund, Fiji Inland Revenue and Customs Authority and the Amalgamated Telcome Holdings and Mr. P.L. Munasinghe as the Chairman of the Water Authority.

 

Ministry of External Affairs

Colombo 

17th October 2014

 

Media Statement issued by the GOSL on the ECJ judgment

The Government of Sri Lanka has noted with concern the decision of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on 16th October, to annul the EU regulations proscribing the LTTE. The defendants of this case have been the Council and Commission of the European Union, together with two member states, the Netherlands and the UK. 

Expectedly, the ECJ judgment requires in-depth study by all the defendant parties. It is noteworthy that the Court has stressed the annulments to be “on fundamentally procedural grounds” and “do not imply any substantive assessment of the question of the classification of the LTTE as a terrorist group.” Further it is observed from the decision of the ECJ that “the effects of the annulled measures are maintained temporarily in order to ensure the effectiveness of any possible future freezing of funds”. 

Conscious of the fact that the listing of the LTTE is a matter internal to the EU, Sri Lanka is confident that the European Commission and the EU Member States will take the best possible decision on the future course of action to be taken in this regard, in accordance with their own legal architecture in preserving sovereignty. 

The EU proscribed the LTTE as a terrorist organization in May 2006, and has remained on its list of terrorist entities ever since. Apart from the EU, the LTTE is proscribed as a terrorist organization in the USA, India, Canada, the UK and Sri Lanka. 

The Government of Sri Lanka has fully supported the EU in its listing of the LTTE and has periodically provided information supportive of the regulation and also with a view to facilitate the Commission’s defence in the ECJ. The Government remains committed to provide to the European Commission and EU Member States, any further assistance and information available, to maintain the LTTE as a brutal terrorist organization. 

It is noteworthy that a number of EU member countries have carried out investigations against LTTE activists in their territories, some of which are ongoing, while some have resulted in the accused being sentenced by Court. 

Sri Lanka is further mindful that the ECJ decision may have an impact including from a security perspective, on the large majority of Sri Lankans living in EU territory, as well as EU citizens of Sri Lankan origin, who are likely to come under pressure once again by pro LTTE activists.

 

Ministry of External Affairs

Colombo

16 October 2014

 

Monetary Policy Review – October 2014

Continuing the sustained low inflation environment for the 68th  consecutive month, headline inflation on a year-on-year (Y-o-Y) basis remained unchanged at 3.5 per cent in September 2014 while declining on an annual average basis to 4.2 per cent from 4.5 per cent in the previous month. Core inflation (Y-o-Y) meanwhile, decelerated to 3.7 per cent in September 2014 from 3.9 per cent in August 2014. The significant reduction of international energy prices and the improvements in the domestic electricity infrastructure have enabled the government to reduce domestic energy prices, and the benefits of these adjustments have now begun to reflect favourably on inflation. This development, along with the continued deceleration of the prices of other key commodities in the international market, is likely to result in inflation remaining at a lower rate than the previously projected range of 4-5 per cent in the period ahead.

Read more: Monetary Policy Review – October 2014

 

Mission News

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February 12, 2014
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Press Release issued by the Media Centre of the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development to travel to Northern Province by Foreign Nationals

October 17, 2014
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