STOCK Colombo Sri Lanka port
A general view of the main port in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Image Credit: Reuters

Colombo: Sri Lanka’s economy shrank 7.8 per cent in 2022 from a year ago, government data showed on Wednesday, as the country struggled with the worst financial crisis in more than seven decades.

The island’s fourth-quarter GDP contracted 12.4 per cent, according to the figures.

The state-run Census and Statistics Department said that the agriculture sector shrank 4.6 per cent, while industries contracted 16 per cent, and services dropped 2 per cent, from a year earlier.

Economic mismanagement coupled with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic left Sri Lanka severely short of dollars for essential imports at the start of last year tipping the country into the worst financial crisis since Independence from the British in 1948.

Sri Lanka is waiting for a $2.9 billion bailout programme from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to be finalised on March 20.