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Chamber chief discusses critical national issues

PRESSING ISSUES: "Finding a peaceful settlement to the conflict, improving governance at all levels and the implementation of key development projects could be described as the three most pressing national issues," said Chairman of The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) Mahen Dayananda in an exclusive interview with LMD.

He elaborates, in the April edition of the business magazine: "The corporate sector may appear to be silent, but a number of meaningful initiatives are being undertaken, which are not publicised - the reason being that it is primarily the government which can most effectively move the peace process forward.

The business community can contribute to the overall peace process, but at a different level - certainly not at the decision-making level. We are contributing behind the scenes, even though we don't speak out publicly on a regular basis," he revealed, when asked about the apparently passive role of the business community vis-a-vis peace.

Speaking further on the issue of national development in the current edition of LMD, he opined that the private sector - which has often been designated the country's engine of growth - is committed to raising the level of Sri Lanka's economic activity in the best possible manner, within the parameters of government policy.

Dayananda, a former head of the Ceylon Tea Traders' Association also said that statistics reveal the private sector plays a dominant role in the national economy. "It contributes 80 per cent of GDP and employs almost 79 per cent of Sri Lanka's workforce.

The private sector is the driving force behind the country's export sector, accounting for almost 90 per cent of Sri Lanka's total exports, while the public sector contributes a mere 10 per cent. The private sector accounts for 75 per cent of investments in Sri Lanka, while the public sector contributes 25 per cent.

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