Prayers answered !  

Foreign aid donors have been kind to Sri Lanka this year with pledges amounting to over a billion dollars a year over the next three or four years, including those expected to be made at the June donor conference in Tokyo. Central Bank governor A.S. Jayawardena seen in a pensive mood after he told the media last week that the recent pledge by the IMF of $567 million under the Poverty Reduction and Growth Fund and Extended Fund Facility, after years of negotiation, was like a "character certificate" indicating that the country's economic policies were sound and would give confidence to investors. Jeremy Carter, the fund's senior resident representative here, said high inflationary expectations still posed a big challenge to the government but that lower oil prices following an early end to the war against Iraq is likely to filter down into lower consumer prices. Picture by M.A. Pushpakumara.


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