ECONOMYNEXT – Hartwig Schafer, World Bank Vice President for the South Asia is visiting Sri Lanka and meeting the political leadership and officials to gain a better understanding of the island’s development needs and reform agenda, the multilateral lender said.
“Sri Lanka has made good progress in reducing poverty and ranks the highest in South Asia in terms of human capital development,” said Schafer said in a statement.
“To continue its journey towards a high middle-income country and create more quality jobs for its people, Sri Lanka needs to continue focusing on better fiscal health, boosting its competitiveness as a tourism, logistics and IT hub and managing climate change risks.
“The World Bank will continue to provide its best expertise to support Sri Lanka’s future growth”.
Schafer will meet resident Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremasinghe, Mangala Samaraweera, State Minister of Finance, Eran Wickremaratne, the Mayor of Colombo, Rosy Senanayake and the Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Indrajith Coomaraswamy.
Schafer will have talks on Sri Lanka’s low female labor force participation, visit project sites to meet communities engaged in development work and launch the World Bank’s new Sri Lanka Development Update.
He will also meet with leading representatives of the private sector and the civil society.
Before joining the South Asia Region, Schafer served as the Vice President for Global Themes and as Vice President for Operations Policy and Country Services.
He had led the rollout of the World Bank’s new policies on procurement, environmental and social safeguards, and innovation of the Bank’s lending and knowledge instruments. Previously, Schafer served as the World Bank’s Country Director for Djibouti, Egypt, and Yemen. (Colombo/Feb14/2018)