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Economic Growth and Trade

Enjoying a full harvest, communities in Sri Lanka's former northern conflict zone are re-establishing farm production and enhanc
Enjoying a full harvest, communities in Sri Lanka's former northern conflict zone are re-establishing farm production and enhancing food security with USAID's assistance. Credit: FAO/Sri Lanka  
FAO Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka's economic growth accelerated with the end of the conflict; GDP growth increased from 3.5 percent in 2009 to 8.3 percent in 2011. Increased investments improved macroeconomic conditions, expanded infrastructure facilities and renewed economic activity in the northern and eastern former conflict zones. However, benefits of this growth are not evenly distributed, and regional inequalities persist. The Western Province accounted for 45 percent of GDP in 2011 while Eastern, North Central and Uva Provinces contributed less than 6 percent each. The Northern Province contributed only 3.7 percent.

USAID promotes development in lagging regions by encouraging, particularly in the Northern and Eastern provinces, enhanced productivity and investment, as well as expanding livelihood opportunities for vulnerable and marginalized groups. Recognizing the private sector as a cornerstone to sustainable economic growth, USAID partners with local Sri Lankan firms in recovering communities. USAID’s programs provide grants, along with technical and managerial assistance, to small and medium businesses that plan to establish or expand operations in former conflict areas.

  • USAID provided life skills and soft skills training to over 7,500 people and assisted more than 5,500 individuals to resume productive livelihoods in the former conflict zones.
  • USAID helped 3,700 people improve the quality and quantity of horticultural production and link to markets through a horticultural alliance. USAID supported farmers in adopting new farming methods and technology introduced by the alliance.
  • USAID supported food security by re-establishing farm production for over 23,000 families.
  • USAID supported approximately 3,600 micro-enterprises through enterprise assistance initiatives. 

Last updated: March 28, 2014

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