Echelon Magazine - June 2021Add to Favorites

Echelon Magazine - June 2021Add to Favorites

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In this issue

Exports cannot deliver what trade reforms can

We began 2021 on a low, with a 3.5% GDP contraction the previous year, the sovereign rating falling deeper into junk status, and with $3.5 billion worth of foreign currency loans to repay during the year - and a massive $23 billion by 2025! In January, official forex reserves stood at $4.15 billion and recovered to $4.5 billion in April before falling to $4.02 billion in May 2021. Things are dire.

Everyone agrees that exports can solve most of our problems (if not all). For decades, we have tried to boost exports while liberally curtailing imports. From being among the first to liberalise its economy in the region, we have regressed to a protectionist state, and worse (please see the Bellwether column on page 22). Yet, we are incapable of unlocking the export potential. According to the World Bank, exports as a share of GDP almost halved from nearly 40% in 2000 to 23% in 2019.

To understand why, we interviewed well-known economist Anushka Wijesinha for this edition of Echelon (please see page 84). He argues that without trade reforms, we will not grow exports. In turn, we will fail to attract FDIs that will add real economic value, create better jobs and uplift living standards—important things investments to build apartments will not do. The more we delay reforms, the harder it will be to do reforms. The economy will fall deeper into debt with frequent currency and balance of payments crises. Worryingly, most do not even recognise the need for trade reforms!
However, there is some comfort. Building consensus on trade reforms is not impossible.

Echelon Magazine Description:

PublisherCapital Media (Pvt) Ltd

CategoryBusiness

LanguageEnglish

FrequencyMonthly

Intelligent Storytelling

The one thing that will define the Echelon magazine will be the quality of the storytelling. Echelon,published monthly, will cover in depth Sri Lanka’s most successful businesses, examine their winning strategiesand profile their leaders in immersive stories. Great stories are also never limited to words, and our approach includes rich photography, bold graphics and leading edge design which together will make for a compelling read.

But business doesn’t start and end in a boardroom;it extends to the golf club greens, to international travel and to pursuits that blurthe lines between commercial venture and sheer passion. The Echelon team will present the best in business and lifestyle coverage that will appeal to an exclusive and affluent readership: an otherwise hard to reach demographic.

Content will be developed by one of the most experienced and proven teams of editors, financial journalists, photographers and designers in the country.This team has already raised the bar for powerful and expertly crafted business news. Shamindra Kulamannage, will lead the editorial team.

The reputation of Echelon is being built on the separation between editorial and advertising. However we are also looking for the most creative and impactful new formats that can be applied in our magazines, iPad app as well as website to help our clients reach our audience. We are flexible and creative and we will have a solution for every single advertiser who wants to reach our audience.

We are passionate about creative results and about working with our advertisers to help them create bespoke multi platform creative solutions with our in house creative team and of course our sales team.

Echelon will be a great place to show off the products and capabilities of our clients because they will be surrounded by an editorial product that is expertly crafted, full of integrity and intelligence.

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