Sri Lanka has to stabilize exchange rate, simplify taxes: Rajapaksa

ECONOMYNEXT  – Sri Lanka has to stabilize the exchange rate, simplify taxes and localize the economy, Mahinda Rajapaksa who was appointed finance minister by President Maithripala amid an intensifying political crisis, said after assuming duties.

"We have to stabilize the exchange rate, we have to protect foreign reserves," Rajapaksa said.

"We have to boost exports and tourism. Taxes have to be simplified."

He said the ability to pay has to be considered when charging taxes.

Local businesses have to take the lead in taking the economy forward and the ‘foreignization’ (videshakaranaya) of the economy has to be halted he said.

Rains have also come for farmers probably as a good omen of the government change, which will help farming and power generation, Rajapaksa said.

The fuel pricing formula has introduced too much uncertainty and a different mechanism will have to be found the adjust prices he said like in the past.

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Sri Lanka was made self sufficient in maize he said.