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Expanding Exports : Relevance of Export Finance

This study examines the status of the export finance market in Sri Lanka and identifies the key limitations that prevent export finance from playing a proactive role in promoting exports. It reveals that the access, availability and diversity of export finance in Sri Lanka is limited and the few export finance solutions that are available remain weak and under-utilised. Export finance solutions reduce the risks faced by exporters such as country and commercial risks, encourage diversification into developing country markets, helps SMEs manage short term cash flow issues and allows exporters to attract buyers by offering better payment terms. By doing so, export finance can help promote exports.

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Parliament should have a formula for regulating cigarettes

Variations in the tobacco excise tax affects Rs. 10s of billions in government revenue. Taxation and pricing has been inconsistent. The lack of a consistent method allows wide discretion to officials in determining the tax. Parliament should adopt a formula to keep taxation in line with national policy, treat stakeholders fairly, and prevent discretion from being abused.

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USD 20 billion export target by 2020: Aiming to be mediocre

Sri Lanka hopes to increase export revenue to USD 20 bn by 2020. This target is perceived as ambitious; but, compared to the country’s growth targets and the performance of regional peers, it is mediocre. This Insight explains that to be confident of setting and achieving ambitious export targets, Sri Lanka must go beyond symptomatic remedies and address the root causes of underlying problems with its export strategy.

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Education inequality and affirmative action: Towards a better estimation

The working paper was presented at the CEPA Annual Poverty Symposium held in September 2013. The education sector had witnessed an overall decline in terms of budgetary allocations, and was also subject to inequality in distribution of educational opportunities within the country. Education inequality has implications for addressing poverty alleviation and equitable development through education.

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