09th September 2010, www.island.lk
Central Bank Ajith Nivard Cabraal said Sri Lanka’s poverty rate has declined to around 9 to 10 percent.
"The poverty rate was estimated at 15 percent in 2007 and our recent estimates suggested that the poverty rate could be lower now, somewhere between 9 to 10 percent, but we are still testing the numbers," Cabraal said speaking to top corporate heads at Temple Trees yesterday morning.
"The main thrust of the government’s economic policy is to eliminate poverty in Sri Lanka and there is a conscious effort to bring poverty levels down," he said.
The government plans to double the per capita income to US$ 4,000 by 2016, but investments would have to grow substantially.
Cabraal said the end of the conflict and the unprecedented political stability brought about with the passing of the 18 amendment would give investors a ‘feel good’ impetus to invest in the country.
"But things are not going to happen on their own," he said, adding that the environment in which to do business in Sri Lanka had to change. "There is a long way to go and there are many challenges but we would get there slowly and steadily and changes will soon be felt."