Sri Lanka

Measuring the Pulse of Pulses: Improving Food Security in Sri Lanka

While Sri Lanka is recovering from its worst economic crisis since independence, significant concerns remain as 42% of the households still adopt food coping strategies which severely affect both quantity and the quality of protein consumption. Pulses are rich in quality and quantity of proteins, however, pulses comprise only 8% of Sri Lanka’s per capita protein supply. Also, the per capita availability of pulses for consumption in Sri Lanka through local production and imports is just over half the recommended quantity for a balanced diet. Against this backdrop, this blog analyses the trends in pulse production, consumption requirements, trade, and associated policy options to provide recommendations for sustainable pulse production to meet the dietary consumption and nutritional requirements of Sri Lanka’s growing population.

Expanding Ed-tech Through Partnerships, Collaborations, and AI to Improve Quality Education: Insights for Sri Lanka

The use of technology in education has notably enhanced productivity and resilience in the educational sector. As the world increasingly turns to educational technology (Ed-tech) solutions, it is essential to align these advancements with Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG 4), which advocates for inclusive and equitable quality education for all. The Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka (IPS) recently hosted a hybrid Roundtable Discussion titled “Ed-tech Towards Achieving SDGs,” offering valuable perspectives on the role of Ed-tech in bridging educational gaps and the facilitators and barriers to the expansion of Ed-tech going ahead.

Unlocking Trade Potential: How the Sri Lanka-Thailand FTA Paves the Way for Enhanced Bilateral Trade

Thailand became the second Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) economy to sign a free trade agreement (FTA) with Sri Lanka, following the FTA signed earlier with Singapore. A major goal of an FTA is to lower trade costs by reducing border tariffs and eliminating behind-the-border barriers for competitively traded products. This article assesses the coverage and potential of the Sri Lanka-Thailand FTA (SLTFTA) tariff liberalisation in increasing bilateral trade.

Edtech for Marginalised Children in Sri Lanka: Insights from MENA and Other Asian Countries

The United Nations marks this year’s International Day of Education under the theme “learning for lasting peace” highlighting the important role played by inclusive and equitable education in the sustenance of peace and development.
However, the path to achieving equitable access to quality education by 2030 seems challenging, with only 1 in 6 countries projected to reach this goal. This underscores the need to reconsider current education systems, specifically across the developing world. In Sri Lanka, despite having achieved near-universal participation in education, there is still a long way to go in achieving equitable education for vulnerable groups such as children with disabilities, out-of-school children, school dropouts, migrant workers’ children, children from minority communities etc.

New Year, New VAT: Can Sri Lanka’s Poor Cope with the Increase?

Ringing in the new year for Sri Lankans was an increase in the value-added tax (VAT) rate to 18% and a withdrawal of tax exemptions on several goods and services. The last day of 2023 witnessed long queues as people rushed to stock up on essentials such as fuel and gas. Although queues are a familiar sight following the onset of the economic crisis, this time around, it was to avoid being hit with the VAT hike.

In light of these developments, this blog aims to shed light on VAT, offering a brief overview and delving into the potential implications of the increase, particularly on the poor and vulnerable.

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