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Philippines Finance Minister Encourages Optimism for Sri Lanka’s Economic Challenges

Benjamin E. Diokono, the Finance Minister/Secretary of the Philippines, has offered words of encouragement to Sri Lanka amidst its current economic difficulties. He emphasized the importance of maintaining optimism to overcome the challenges the nation is facing.

Reflecting on the economic hardships that the Philippines experienced in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Minister Diokono, in an exclusive interview with News 1st’s Zulfick Farzan, highlighted how sound structural reforms played a crucial role in his country’s ability to overcome similar challenges.

Minister Diokono also suggested that China should consider forgiving a portion of the debt extended to Sri Lanka, as failure to do so might result in the island nation’s economic struggles persisting. He noted that debt forgiveness has been implemented in similar circumstances and could be a viable solution for Sri Lanka.

He further recommended that Sri Lanka assess its capacity to mobilize domestic resources, which, if achieved, could make it easier for the country to receive support from international financial institutions such as the IMF, World Bank, and regional partners.

This advice was shared during his presence at the 2023 IMF and World Bank Annual Meetings in Morocco, on Tuesday, October 10.

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