Spotlight: Econ Op-eds in Summary (Week ended 02nd October '19)
1. The provincial divide
By: Daily FT
· Provincial GDP statistics for 2018 indicate that the Western province continues to dominate in terms of contribution to GDP. Almost all other provinces have either remained unchanged or decreased their contribution. Hence, taking private sector jobs outside the Western province is an equitable solution to Sri Lanka’s slow economic growth.
· The Western province continues to attract jobs due to its dominant service sector and industrial sector. Meanwhile, regional provinces are more dependent on the less-productive agricultural sector, and public services. Attractive alternative employment opportunities outside the Western province are vital in shifting the labour from unproductive to productive sectors.
· Skills, land, capital, market access and infrastructure are key in attracting labour. However, the Sri Lankan provinces do not compete with each other to attract investment, increase public revenue, or foster enterprises. Therefore, communicating clear policies in reducing the skills gap, encouraging investment, and ensuring labour the freedom to move up the value chain will be crucial in taking growth to the provinces.
(Compiled by: Chayu Damsinghe, Promodhya Abeysekara & Asel Hettiarachchi)