Sri Lanka and China decided to enter into a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in August 2013 to further expand trade between the two countries. Technical negotiations, which officially commenced in September 2014, are still underway with five rounds of negotiations having been concluded. China is the world’s second largest economy, its largest exporter and its second largest importer. For a small market economy like Sri Lanka, an agreement with a country such as China presents exciting opportunities as well as daunting challenges. This briefing note provides an assessment of the challenges and opportunities that Sri Lanka is likely to face in operating under an FTA with China. Potential challenges and opportunities have been identified by analysing the key features of China’s existing FTAs with other countries.
The Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), ranks the competitiveness of economies. The GCI score is calculated using two types of indicators: objective (or measurable) indicators and sentiment (or subjective) indicators. While Sri Lanka has experienced a steady increase in the objective indicators, the steep decline in sentiment indicators have overshadowed these improvements, driving down the country’s overall score and rank.
This brief is a primer on the ongoing debate concerning the proposed reform of the Muslim Marriage and Divorce Act (MMDA). The brief contains information on the background of the debate, and the key stakeholders involved in the proposed reform process. It also summarises the proposed reforms of the MMDA and other legislation.
This is Verité Research’s latest study on the Sri Lankan government’s commitments on reconciliation and accountability. The ongoing UNHRC Session began on 26 February 2018, and will include a discussion on Sri Lanka’s progress in this regard. This report analyses the government’s progress in fulfilling all 36 commitments made inUNHRC Resolution 30/1, as at 26 February 2018.
The original version of this report was commissioned by the Westminster Foundation for Democracy to assist in its work in Sri Lanka with the Sri Lankan parliament and political parties. The opinions expressed and contents of this report are not necessarily those held by Westminster Foundation for Democracy. The report was prepared by the politics research practice at Verité Research with Charudaththa Ekanayake functioning as principal researcher under the overall editorial supervision of Janeen Fernando.
Analysis of past budgets reveal large deviations between budgeted allocations and actual expenditure. This shows that expectations set by the government during the budget speech are not honoured. This Insight analyses budgeting on social services and the rural economy to demonstrate the extent of deviations in promised allocations and actual expenditure. Results suggest that when precise expenditure is not tangible, it is easier to renege on budget promises.
Criminal justice institutions re-victimise children. This report details the legal and institutional challenges impeding justice for children in Sri Lanka. The report also details specific recommendations to divert children away from the justice system, and prevent institutionalisation being a matter of first resort.
The report Right to Information: Discourse and Compliance in Sri Lanka was compiled in collaboration between Verité Research and Democracy Reporting International (DRI). Verité Research analysed the right to information in the Sri Lankan context while Democracy Reporting International detailed international best practices relating to proactive disclosure. The study examines the drafting of Sri Lanka’s RTI Act and existing laws that are inconsistent with its provisions. It recommends strategies to strengthen proactive disclosure of information, and to amend laws inconsistent with the RTI Act.
The recent Court of Appeal judgement on SLFP MP Geetha Kumarasinghe’s disqualification from Parliament due to her dual citizenship has sparked a debate on whether the disqualification of candidates invalidates nomination papers. This briefing note discusses this issue and argues that nomination papers cannot be invalidated on the basis that a candidate is disqualified from being elected to parliament.
There are several causes to the problems facing Sri Lanka’s economy. The problem of bureaucratic inefficiency exemplified by this case study: finding information about trade regulations is a significant barrier to improving the economy in agricultural products. The poor performance in the supply of even basic information indicates the larger challenge of improving the bureaucracy.