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Sri Lanka, the fastest growing Asian economy after China

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“Sri Lanka has emerged from a decades-long war, and is enjoying an economic revival. It is currently the second-fastest growing Asian economy after China, a fact not lost upon the IMF, which recently upgraded Sri Lanka to middle income emerging market status, stated the Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister of Singapore, Teo Chee Hean.

The Singaporean Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister was delivering the keynote address as guest-of-honour at the 6th International Conference of South Asia on the theme of ‘South Asia in the New Decade: Challenges and Prospects’, organised by the Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS) of the National University of Singapore (NUS) which has been rated three years running by the Times Higher Educational Supplement as one of the world’s 25 top universities

Like Brazil, Sri Lanka enjoys an adult literacy rate of just over 90%, he said adding ‘Sri Lanka’s gross enrolment ratio, which gives an indication of school attendance, is also comparable to that of China’.

Referring to Sri Lanka’s gender gap he said, in the Global Gender Gap Report 2010 published by the World Economic Forum, which measures gender-based disparities on economic, political, education and health-based criteria, Sri Lanka is ranked within the top 20, the only South Asian country to do so. Closing the gender gap is not just an issue of gender equity, it is also one of harnessing the current human resource potential, and uplifting the potential of the next generation.

The most important determinant of a country’s competitiveness is its human talent – the skills, education and productivity of its workforce. In any country, women account for half of the current talent base and have a key role in nurturing the next generation, Mr. Teo Chee Hean further said.

South Asia is a strategically important region. It is home to more than a fifth of the world’s population. Add to that the fact that it sits astride the key sea lanes of the Indian Ocean, and it is easy to see how South Asia is poised to play a key role in the world in the 21st century, he said.

The region has already begun to display its economic potential. South Asia has seen a strong rebound in its economic growth since last year, and is poised to grow around 7% in 2010 and nearly 8% in 2011, one of the highest rates in the world, the Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister of Singapore further stated. –Singapore Dy. PM and Defence Minister-


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November 16, 2010 at 3:17 pm

Posted in News

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