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Business confidence in Sri Lanka hits rock bottom,

Business confidence in Sri Lanka is at its lowest in years, according to the chairman of the Ceylon Chambers of Commerce Vish Govindasamy.

Sri Lanka Business Confidence dropped by 39.6 % in Nov 2022, compared with a decrease of 44.0 % YoY in the previous month.

“Business confidence is probably at its lowest since I’ve been in business. It’s probably the most difficult time that we have faced. But we are resilient,” he said.

In Sri Lanka, the Business Condition Index measures entrepreneurs’ sentiment about current business situations and expectations about business conditions. It includes Profitability, Skilled Labour Availability, Demand, Sales and Capacity Utilization.

“A slight dip in the rate of inflation fails to inspire business people, as gloom pervades the private sector,” leading business magazine LMD said, in its January edition.

Nielsen IQ’s Director – Consumer Insights Therica Miyanadeniya noted in LMD: “Year 2022, one of the most controversial and difficult in the history of Sri Lanka, is coming to an end.

As one looks back, the country has weathered turbulent times with untold hardships faced by businesses and people alike.”

“Though the fuel crisis has subsided somewhat, the cost of goods and services is keeping the rate of inflation high … However, inflation is showing signs of going down with the National Consumer Price Index (NCPI) at 70.6% in October, compared to less than 75% in September,” she added.

Miyanadeniya asserted that: “the optimism that was evident in November has been quenched, and this disappointment and the continued hardships faced by business and the populace at large are also reflected in both the LMD-NielsenIQ Business Confidence Index and the Consumer Confidence Index.”

LMD reports that 75% of executives responding to the exclusive survey carried out in the first week of December anticipate that the economy in general ‘will get worse’ in the year ahead (up from 59% in November) and only one-in-10 say it will ‘stay the same’ (down from 20% in November).

“Pessimism is evident re expectations of sales volumes with only 41% of executives anticipating an increase in the next 12 months (51% in November) and 17% stating that sales volumes would ‘stay the same’,” a spokesperson for LMD added.

The magazine also noted: “Once more, there’s no significant change in executive opinion with regard to sales volumes compared to the same time last year with only 27% observing an increase in business (29% in November and 27% in October).”

LMD’s publisher, Media Services, said the latest edition of the magazine has been released. Its digital edition is also available on WhatsApp and the publisher’s social media platforms.

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