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Sri Lanka economy grew 7.8-pct in 2014: CB Governor

EconomyNext – Sri Lanka’s economy is estimated to have grown 7.8 percent in 2014 wih inflation falling to low levels along with unemployment and poverty, Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal said Friday.

"Economic growth is expected to have been 7.8 percent in 2014, much higher than the rest of the world," Cabraal said while presenting the regulator’s ‘Road Map for 2015’ giving monetary and financial sector policies for the period 2015-2020.

"Inflation fell to a low of 2.1 percent and this year we have the lowest inflation and highest growth after the opening up of the economy in 1977."
 

The service sector, which has been the leading sector of the economy, grew 6.5 percent in 2014 and the industrial sector by 12.5 percent, Cabraal said.

But growth in the agriculture sector, which was hit by floods after heavy and unseasonal rains, fell to 1.3 percent.

The unemployment rate fell to 4.3 percent in the first half of 2014.

The island’s exports grew 10 percent to 11.5 billion US dollars in 2014 while imports were 19 billion dollars which was higher than in 2013, Cabraal said.

The trade deficit in 2014 went up 4.7 percent to 8.0 billion dollars from 7.6 billion dollars in 2013.

The island ended 2014 with foreign reserves of 8.2 billion dollars after peaking at 9.0 billion dollars, he said.

(Updated)