In his statement, the state minister asserts that: (1) the industrial sector’s contribution to GDP has declined drastically from a high of 54% to 27%, and (2) that it is after 1977 that the industrial sector’s contribution to GDP has been in decline.
To check the state minister’s claim, FactCheck.lk consulted the Central Bank of Sri Lanka’s (CBSL) data on the industrial sector’s contribution to GDP.
On the first claim, Exhibit 1 shows that the industrial sector’s contribution to GDP has never been higher than 30.6%. It was 27.4% in 2019, which does not point to a drastic decline (of 54% to 27%) as claimed by the state minister.
On the second claim, the industrial sector’s contribution to GDP increased from 1968 onwards and has fluctuated within a narrow range of 25% – 31% from 1974 onwards. Industry’s contribution to GDP increased above the 1977 level in 8 subsequent years: 1980, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2012, and 2013, reaching a high of 30.6% in 2006. The contribution level in 2019 was only 1.3 percentage points less than the level it was in 1977.
Industrial production has never been as high as 54% nor has it fallen drastically from a high past achievement, nor has it had a pattern of decline since 1977 as claimed by the state minister. Therefore, we classify his statement as FALSE.
*FactCheck.lk’s verdict is based on the most recent information that is publicly accessible. As with every fact check, if new information becomes available, FactCheck.lk will revisit the assessment.
Exhibit 1: Industry as a % of GDP from 1950 onwards
Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Annual Reports, available at https://www.cbsl.gov.lk/en/publications/economic-and-financial-reports/annual-reports/annual-report-2020.