Business

Wake up and smell the debt: Harsha

  • Reserves down from $ 5.7 b to $ 4.3 b in January

  • Accuses govt of falsely reassuring public

  • Claims no hope without IMF support

 

Samagi Jana Balawegaya MP Dr. Harsha de Silva said yesterday (22) that the Government has $ 6 billion of international debt to settle and that it is in denial, thinking that it can be easily paid.

“The Government owes about $ 6 billion to the World Bank, Asian Development Bank (ADB), China, and India,” he said.

It was revealed that as of 31 December 2020, Sri Lanka’s foreign reserves were at $ 5.7 billion, but it decreased to $ 4.8 billion by the end of January.

“We can see that the Government has spent over $ 900 million during one month. Further, with the current debts paid, we are in possession of only about $ 4.3 billion. I can responsibly say that we will not be able to pay the current debt at this rate,” Dr. de Silva said. 

He accused the Government of falsely reassuring the public and requested the Government not to use denial as a strategy.

“We should not veil these problems but rather take straightforward action to solve them,” he said. 

He further stated that the Government will also have to pay the debt taken by private banks which were used for currency swaps. 

“There is a debt of about $ 1 billion used for currency swaps,” he said.