ERAN WICKRAMARATNE YESTERDAY PARLIAMENT VEDIO CLIP.mpg - Google Drive.mp4_snapshot_09.35_[2016.04.13_08.11.49]

Colossal losses that state-run SriLankan Airlines was made to suffer since ex-President Mahinda Rajapaksa chased away Emirates Airlines, and a questionable aircraft deal, is a national financial crime, Deputy Minister Eran Wickramaratne said.

SriLankan Airlines, which made profit of 4.4 billion rupees in 2008, the year in which the management agreement with Emirates Airlines ended, has lost 107 billion rupees since, then.

The Rajapaksa administration had cancelled the visa of then Chief Executive Peter Hill because he did not bump enough paying passengers to accommodate a large entourage of the President Mahinda Rajapaksa in a single aircraft, he said.

“The CEO had said ‘We should not offload all these passengers since they are citizens and they are paying passengers where there is a contract’,” Wickramaratne told parliament.

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Sri Lanka’s deputy Minister of State Enterprise Development said that internationally exposed management skills of local expatriates are the need of the hour if the island nation is to achieve its expected economic targets in the near future.

“Everyone only talks of capital and technology but in my experience it is management that is needed more; management which has been exposed internationally.” Eran Wickramaratne, deputy Minister, State Enterprise Development said.

“Nearly 300,000 nationals leave for greener pastures every year and seven percent of them are professionals,”

Adopting a high level of service delivery that includes international standards and work place organisation methods such as the 5S system was vital to improving the country’s public sector, Deputy Minister State Enterprise Development Eran Wickramaratne said.
Speaking at the National Convention on 5S organised by the Post Graduate Institute of Management (PIM) and the Sri Lanka Association for the Advancement of Quality and Productivity, Wickramaratne said that the biggest challenge for state owned enterprises (SOEs) was improving their management and professionalism.

Sri Lanka needs to have a political strategy to support the implementation of reforms and restructurings of state owned enterprises to reduce the burden on the treasury or the tax payer, deputy minister of state owned enterprises (SOEs) said.

“We have a situation in which the tax payer at large is paying for the expenses of a few who actually benefit directly from those enterprises,”Eran Wickramaratne, deputy minister of state enterprise development told a forum organized by the Institute of Policy Studies.



Sri Lanka needs to reform taxation, loss making state enterprises, labour market, agriculture and social protection to ensure long term economic growth, observed the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) releasing its flagship report Sri Lanka State of The Economy 2015.

The report spells out a range of economic challenges the new government is facing of which fiscal consolidation is key. Deputy Minister of State Enterprise Development, Eran Wickramaratne addressing the gathering said the government’s immediate focus will be the stability of foreign reserves while introducing necessary economic reforms.

“In the past the economy was driven by largely a public investment programme and borrowings. So, the new government has to work hard to improve the enabling environment so that we attract investments,” Minister Wickramaratne said.




Times 1004

Sunday Times – 10/04/15

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