Oct 11, Colombo: Sri Lanka's ruling party presidential candidate Minister Sajith Premadasa emphasized that in the future the international agreements that are unfavorable to the country will be abolished and only the favorable agreements will be implemented.
Premadasa was speaking as the presidential candidate of the New Democratic Front at a conference of university academics today at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute in Colombo. Many scholars and people's representatives were present at the occasion.
Addressing the gathering, the presidential candidate said he doesn't believe the commonly held theory that the more free trade agreements are made, the more a country develops
"I do not accept that idea as it is. Foreign trade agreements are important, defense agreements are important, political agreements are important. However, our country doesn't enjoy the relative advantages of all these agreements. Where there is no relative advantage, such agreements become detrimental for the country."
"Recently there was serious debate on ACSA, SOFA, MCC and various agreements were discussed. What should we do when making decisions on these policies? We need to look at the core of the agreements, good and the bad, advantages and drawbacks. All this has to be looked as the country in the center setting aside personal views. If beneficial to the country we agree to implement. If not we reject."
"It seems that discussions have already been held to arrive at agreements on the basis of personal relationships, sacrificing national interests to for political motives. The time has come for the country to question whether it is patriotism to sacrifice the national interest and national identity of the country to satisfy the personal interests," said Mr. Sajith Premadasa.