Sri Lankan foreign minister G L Peiris said on Wednesday that India will provide an additional financial assistance of $500 million to Sri Lanka amid dire economic conditions in the neighbouring country.
The Lankan minister also informed that Bangladesh was willing to postpone a $450 million in swap repayments.
Peiris said, “Assistance by the IMF will take about six months to come to us and it will come in tranches.”
“During the intervening period, we need to find funds to keep our people supplied with essentials,” he added.
Earlier in April, India had said that it was ready to continue assisting Sri Lanka in line with its ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy with the island nation going through severe economic crisis.
Spokesperson for the ministry of external affairs, Arindam Bagchi said India has been closely observing the evolving economic situation and other developments in Sri Lanka.
India has extended assistance of approximately USD 2.5 billion in the past three months to Sri Lanka including credit facilities for fuel and food, he had said.
Bagchi said, “Since mid-March, over 270,000 metric tonnes of diesel and petrol have been delivered to Sri Lanka. In addition, around 40,000 tonnes of rice have been supplied under the recently extended USD 1 billion credit facility.”
Notably, Sri Lanka has been going through an economic crisis that arose due to economic mismanagement, rise in external debt, depleting foreign exchange reserves, a weakened currency, and rising prices.