Reviving the country is no magic and it is possible only under a journey best suited for the country with long-term plans and policies, said UNP leader for Colombo Ravi Karunanayake.

Also a former finance minister, he was giving an interview to ‘Lankadeepa’ newspaper.

Commenting on the present state of affairs, Karunanayake said the country has reached a situation in which thinking anew and taking it forward with creativity are needed.

Seventy-six years of independence did nothing to safeguard the country and we all are paying for that mistake, he said.

It happened due to immature decisions, playing games with politics and people becoming used to an impossible way of living where everything was expected free, he said.

196345311 770636510299807 7639982909282821119 n

This society should be transformed into one that works hard, said Karunanayake.

He answered criticism that the regime from 2015 to 2019 sold the highest sovereign bonds to take the country to a debt trap that led to its bankruptcy.

According to him, the issue is not about which government was the worst debtor, but about the ones that obtained loans without any repayment ability.

Recent loans were not obtained with any repayment ability and those loans were not invested on revenue generation either, he stressed.

Cartoon economic crisis

Unable to resolve its problems, the country became bankrupt, Karunanayake said, adding that regaining economic stability was something totally different.

There is no revival without proper fiscal discipline, he said.

When asked about the worsening public woes despite government claims of being in the final stage of revival, Karunanayake said president Ranil Wickremesinghe ended shortages of fuel, electricity, gas and other essentials within nine months, while giving relief possible and taking difficult decisions.

rw budget 242311133


"The country is now on the path to stability, although it is a difficult and unpleasant one. If this path was not undertaken, the situation would have become much worse. It will take some time more to come out of dependance. No one can do magic. It should be a journey suited for the country with a long-term plan and policies", said Karunanayake.


The deceitful does nothing, but only attacks and sabotages the work being done. That should change, or else the country will be ruined. Big talk cannot make a country, he said.

Referring to unbearable tax burdens, he said the taxes are most unreasonable.

tax 2327

The country became bankrupt due to the loss of Rs. 650 billion due to tax cuts in 2019.

Difficult decisions need to be taken to revive the collapsed country, he said, stressing the need for a proper mechanism to recover revenue from tax defaulters.

That will ease the burden on the masses, while export and new revenue avenues need to be encouraged.

When asked how to include non-payers amounting to one million in the tax-net, he said mentality and things needed to be changed for that.

The Central Bank should be more humanitarian in its administration without acting unconcerned.

UNP 221012

Referring to the UNP’s readiness for the presidential polls, Karunanayake said the party was presently correcting its past mistakes and is embarked on a new journey.

That journey will be with like-minded parties, he said, adding that Wickremesinghe’s maturity that has gained victories for the country is needed further.

Commenting on the party’s chances at the election, he said the UNP would once again address its membership and rally those who have become silent.

Ranil Ravi

Many others too, are rallying round the party, as it is clear the country needs the maturity of a party that previously too, made the country’s economy.

Responding to the NPP’s claims to be ahead and the government’s unpopular decisions, he said the truth should be told, since this is no time for joking.

No one else has announced a programme to resolve the country’s issues, he said, adding that though unpopular, what is being done is exactly what is needed for the country.

Sabotaging it will bring perilous results once again, he warned.

The need of the hour is to take the country on the correct path and create faith among the youth about their country.

With the UNP not in any alliance, many want Wickremesinghe to contest as a non-political candidate.

Things that should be done internally are in progress, with persons having the best answers to the people should be brought together for their victory, he added.

WhatsApp Image 2023 08 02 at 15.09.47

Follow Us


Exchange Rates


Electric Bill