Given the Easter attacks in April and the poor management of the situation by Sri Lankan authorities, the GDP is likely to hit -1 to 0% said the President/ CEO- Sri Lanka/Maldives and respected business professional Dr Rohantha Athukorala who was the Key note Speaker at the Annual District Conference of Rotaract - Sri Lanka & Maldives. Rotaract District that holds the top 5900 emerging leaders of the country in the Yolo generation, have not been in the work force during the war times of Sri Lanka and who have experienced mainly the good times that Sri Lanka has seen in the last ten years only the good times.
But now we need to understand the reality and fashion our self to tough situations given the down turn in the tourism and retail sector post the Easter Attacks said Dr Athukorala who has held a multitude of positions like Chairman Sri Lanka Tourism, Sri Lanka Export Development and also headed the Pivotal policy making entity in the Ministry of Finance in the Government of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka’ s economy has been reeling since 2015 with the GDP growth declining from 4.5% in 2016 to 3.4% in 2017 whilst in 2018 it dropped to 3.2% as per Asian Development Bank whilst the South Asian counties GDP growth has been spiraling at 7% plus which means that Sri Lanka is lagging behind the region said Athukorala.
Let’s accept it ‘ we are living in a environment which is volatile be it earthquakes, tsunamis or terror attacks and now the global travelers are immune to this but, what we see is that strong brands can bounce back quicker’. The best example is Thailand Tourism that has experience over 6000 attacks on tourists between 2006 and 2018 which many of them losing their lives but the tourist arrivals have increased from 12 million to 35 million as at today. Hence we must all contribute to making the brand Sri Lanka strong again he said.
Hence, my key message to you is that Sri Lanka will bounce back within the next 8-10 months provided the government does not get into a political issue...but latest within a year Sri Lanka will get into pre Easter attack times and you must now focus and sharpen your skill set by reading for this time. Get an MBA, Training your self on new skills like Project Management, the use of Artificial Intelligence(AI) to name a few. ‘ Remember that this country belongs to all of us and hence each of must become the brand manager of Sri Lanka On FB, WhatsApp, Twitter and Instagram to turnaround the economy to a growth economy voice Dr. Athukorala.