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Bankrupt Sri Lanka’s economic crisis to deepen further as IMF talks are delayed

Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Sri Lankan President flees amid protests

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) which has been in talks with bankrupt Sri Lanka for a rescue package said it is closely monitoring the situation in the island nation amid a political crisis as both President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe offered to resign. 

Talks will now have to be stalled until a new government takes over. This could only further intensify the economic crisis.

The delay in IMF assistance would only aggravate the economic crisis in the country. 

Angry protestors have stormed into the residences of Rajapaksa Wickremesinghe.

Also read: Sri Lanka crisis: Gotabaya finally agrees to go, PM Wickremesinghe too will quit as protesters burn his house

“To ensure the continuation of the Government including  the safety of all citizens I accept the best recommendation of the Party Leaders today, to make way for an All-Party Government. To facilitate this I will resign as Prime Minister,” Wickremesinghe tweeted.

However, Sri Lanka's economic situation is unlikely to improve in the short to medium term even if a new team takes over as a full blown humanitarian crisis has now erupted. 

Earlier, Wickremesinghe, who took charge in May this year, warned that it will take more than a year for things to start improving. He said that the economy has “completely collapsed.” He said the situation would improve only in 2024.

Hit by shortage of food and fuel, Sri Lanka’s economy contracted 1.6 per cent in the March quarter.

Schools and public offices have been shut down as the country has now run out of fuel.