Mandatory Compliance for Whoever In Power


Minister of Transport, Highways, and Mass Media, Bandula Gunawardena, announced that any future government in Sri Lanka will be obligated to adhere to the agreements made with the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Speaking at a media briefing held at the Presidential Media Centre on Monday, Minister Gunawardena said that political parties aspiring to assume power must commit to the IMF agreements established by President and Finance Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Mr Gunawardena highlighted that the current government cannot accommodate additional financial allocations for state sector salaries or other discrepancies within government bodies. A committee has been formed to address these salary issues, and solutions are to be proposed for the 2025 budget.

Regarding the 2024 budget, Gunawardena said that despite significant revenue generation efforts, including Rs.1550 billion from the Inland Revenue Department and Rs.923 billion from Customs, the government's operational expenses far exceed its income. In 2023, total expenditures amounted to Rs.4.3 trillion, covering salaries, pensions, subsidies, and loan interest.

Looking ahead to 2025, compliance with the IMF loan agreements, which are in place until 2028, remains crucial. The IMF has agreed to provide significant financial support, including USD 663 million under an extended credit facility and USD 700 million for the budget deficit. The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank have pledged a combined USD 700 million, with an anticipated loan relief of USD 3655 million through foreign debt restructuring.