“We are very poor. We have lost touch with the world. We need the World Bank to catch up.” This is a quotation from Julian Gewirtz’s book, Unlikely Partners, that I will be using in my keynote address at the University of Peradeniya Humanities and Social Sciences Conference on 28 July 2017. It was in a conversation between Deng Xiaoping and Robert McNamara.
I had some fun today. The Chamber of Commerce organizes a Sri Lanka Economic Summit every year. I was invited to moderate the closing session that included the Chairs/CEOs of some of Sri Lanka’s highest profile companies: Brandix, Softlogic, Keells, Hemas and Dialog Axiata. The topic was innovation and growth. There was a lot of talk about infrastructure and education, with the latter winning by a length.