Ramesh Shanmuganathan is a leader in the technology-driven business, he is the Chief Executive Officer at John Keells X and Group Chief Information Officer & Executive VP at John Keells Holdings Plc. He has a seven-point formula to recover from this crisis.
(1) Pick a SWOT ( (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) team and a leader who can command their respect and guide them to act swiftly to address the critical priorities of the country. The team must have representation from all stakeholders and subject matter expertise to deliver the best outcome in the shortest possible time.
(2)Focus on the critical priorities such as medicine, food, gas, fuel, electricity, fertilizer, etc to give relief to people in terms of their basic necessities so that life can return to normalcy.
(3)Speak to our Donor agencies and countries whilst working on a focused plan to increase our revenue through established streams such as Garments, Tourism, IT/BPO and encourage local entrepreneurship to focus on exports to boost our liquidity to address (1) above.
(4)Restructure our long-term debts and have a clear program to manage our Debt/GDP gearing with the intervention of IMF and other donor agencies/ countries.
(5)Boost our domestic entrepreneurship and production to be self-sufficient in areas such as agriculture, and dairy, and encourage value addition to our exports whilst curtailing consumption to manage our balance of payments in the short to medium term.
(6)Enrich our bilateral relationship with key trading partners and prospects to boost our economy and seek direct investments with a view to boosting our capital inflow to expand key sectors which can contribute to the economy.
(7)Look at constitutional reforms to bring the power back to parliament with clear accountability and responsibility matrix. Ensure that the executive, judiciary and parliament co-exist with the right checks and balances.