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Sri Lanka’s post-war northern industrialisation effort failed: report

ECONOMYNEXT – A new study to revive the economy of Sri Lanka’s war-ravaged northern province said efforts to set up industries in the region, still struggling to recover 10 years after the Tamil Tiger separatist rebellion was crushed, had failed.

The Northern Province has one million people of the island’s total population of 21 million with the percentage living below the poverty line at 7.7 percent, almost double the national average of 4.1 percent.

The region also has high levels of unemployment.

According to the study, an economic development framework for the Northern Province master plan commissioned by the Central Bank, the province was host to the lowest number of industrial enterprises in the country as of 2017.

Of 5,332 industrial enterprises across the country, only 34 (0.6 percent) are situated in the north.

And of the 23 enterprises registered under the Board of Investment, only one has been funded by the minority Tamil diaspora.

“The northern industrial sector continues to expand at far lower levels than the national average and employment creation has not satisfied demand,” the study said.
(Colombo/February 24/2019-SB)

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