Date: Jul 31, 2023
The Neighbourhood Scope | Debts, Geopolitics and Uncertainty: Beyond the Colombo Conundrum

This event is part of the series “The Neighbourhood Scope,” a monthly feature of the Strategic Studies Programme that intends to rekindle key conversations, questions, and debates concerning India’s neighbourhood.

Nearly one year after swearing in as the President of Sri Lanka, Ranil Wickremesinghe visited India between July 20-July 22, 2023. Terming the visit "the foundation for the next 25 years of Indo-Lanka relations," both countries touched upon an entire gamut of issues, focussed on economic recovery, and discussed their irritants.  Wickremesinghe's visit comes at a time when Sri Lanka has embarked on a path to recovery, is witnessing some political stability, and promoting political reforms. Yet challenges persist for the "tear-shaped" island nation - the IMF-prescribed reforms have grown unpopular, poverty is on the rise, China - its largest lender has grown indolent to Sri Lanka's suffering, and the upcoming presidential elections have only politicised an already polarised country. What lies ahead for Colombo is very uncertain. How is Sri Lanka recuperating from its current political and economic crisis, and what lessons has it drawn from them? How are these developments shaping the country's politics? Will the political class promote such sustainable reforms as the country heads to elections next year? What role are multilateral institutions and Sri Lanka's major bilateral partners - India, China, and Japan - playing in the country's politico-economic transformation? Has China's passivity and India's proactive response reshaped Sri Lanka's foreign policy priorities and goals?

This is an in-person event.

Venue Address

ORF Conference Room, 20, Rouse Avenue Institutional Area, New Delhi