Aug 11, Colombo: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has appointed an expert committee to study Sri Lanka - Singapore Free Trade Agreement and to submit a report to him within two months.
The President has appointed this committee after considering the views expressed to the President by various parties regarding the agreement.
Former Vice Chancellor of the University of Colombo, retired Economics Professor W.D. Lakshman has been appointed as the Chairman of the Committee.
The other members of the Committee are former Professor of Economics at the Sri Lanka Open University Sirimevan Colombage, former Professor of Economics at Kelaniya University Ajitha Tennakoon, Independent Consultant Dr. Sanath Jayanetti and former Assistant Governor of the Central Bank R.A. Jayathissa.
Accordingly the committee will study Sri Lanka - Singapore Free Trade Agreement and its practical impact. It is also expected to get recommendations to prepare policies for a future Sri Lanka Trade Policy.
The subjects of the committee includes studies on the impact of the FTA on service sectors, Sri Lanka's social and economic situations and on people's living conditions.
The committee is open to all parties to submit their ideas and suggestions on the Sri Lanka-Singapore FTA.
The President will look into the progress of the Expert Committee periodically through interim reports and the final report is expected to be submitted within two months.
The state sector doctors' trade union Government Medical Officers' Association (GMOA) is vehemently against the Sri Lanka-Singapore FTA alleging that the contents of the agreement had not been disclosed to the Cabinet and the country and that there were regulatory issues in various employment sectors without the necessary safety measures.
The President has earlier assured that he will not let anything that would be detrimental to the country's progress take place at any cost.
Sri Lanka and Singapore signed the Free Trade Agreement on 23 January 2018 during the official visit of Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong to Colombo.