As the country grapples with its worst economic crisis in almost 70 years, Sri Lanka’s central bank is ready to appoint a new president.
P Nandalal Weerasinghe has stated that he will take over as governor of the bank on Thursday.
It happened after Ajith Nivard Cabraal, the bank’s CEO, announced his resignation on Monday, after widespread protests over rising living costs and power outages.
Mr. Weerasinghe’s appointment has yet to be officially announced by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka. The bank is awaiting confirmation from the country’s president, according to a spokesman for the bank.
Mr. Weerasinghe said he had been given the job and had accepted it over the phone from Australia.
However, he refused to discuss any of his ideas for Sri Lanka’s crisis-plagued economy or when a rate decision would be made.
From September 2012 to September 2016, Mr. Weerasinghe served as the bank’s deputy governor, a position he held for eight years.
Mr. Cabraal, the bank’s governor, announced his resignation on Monday, following the resignation of all of the country’s cabinet ministers.
Angry protestors have also demanded the resignation of the country’s prime minister and president.
The island nation of 22 million people is experiencing its worst economic crisis since gaining independence from the United Kingdom in 1948.
Analysts had expected the bank to boost its main interest rate significantly in order to stabilise the Sri Lankan rupee and bring down the country’s skyrocketing inflation rate.
Demonstrators have taken to the streets of Colombo, the capital, after homes and businesses were left without power for up to 13 hours at a time.
Sri Lankans are also grappling with shortages and rising prices as a result of the country’s sharp devaluation of their currency last month in preparation for bailout talks with the International Monetary Fund.
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and his brother, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, are the only two members of Sri Lanka’s cabinet who have not submitted letters of resignation.
On Monday, Ali Sabry, President Rajapaksa’s former counsel and the country’s former justice minister, was sworn in as the country’s new finance minister.