Seized companies must be returned, Sri Lanka investment chief says

ECONOMYNEXT – Companies taken over by the Sri Lankan government under a controversial law should be returned to their owners to strengthen investors confidence, the head of the island’s investment promotion agency said.

Upul Jayasuriya, chairman of the Board of Investment, said that the government was liable to pay compensation to owners of 35 businesses were taken over by the state.

The takeover of 35 firms were done by the former Rajapaksa regime under the controversial ‘Revival of the Underperforming and Underutilised Assets Bill’ of 2011.

“These kinds of takeover will not encourage investors,” Jayasuriya told EconomyNext on the sidelines of a BOI forum. 

“The companies which were taken over are fighting back and the cases are now in international arbitration,” Jayasuriya said.

“If we don’t return the companies the government is liable to pay compensation. The law says you have to pay compensation within six months but now several years have passed.” (Colombo/August 12 2015)
 

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