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Last updated: 18 May, 2005 - Published 15:13 GMT
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Opposition: UPFA was anti-donors
SLDF conference in Kandy
UNP says the government failed to capitalise from SLDF
United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) government has failed to capitalise on Sri Lanka Development Forum (SLDF), main opposition said.

Former deputy finance minister and United National Party (UNP) parliamentarian Bandula Gunawardhana said Sri Lanka need at least US$10 billion for tsunami reconstruction and economic development.

“The government would have managed to receive US$7-10 billion, has there been a consensus among the parties in the government.”

Gunawardhana told BBC Sandeshaya (BBC Sinhala) that UPFA heavily criticised the World Bank and the donor countries when they were in the opposition.

He recalled that the coalition partners even burnt effigies of the WB country director Peter Harrold.

“It is of course a certain victory for the president to organise Sri Lanka Development Forum (SLDF) and receive financial aid,”he admitted.

The government has however failed to capitalise on the pledges of US$4.5 billion in Tokyo conference, according to the UNP.

The SLDF held in Kandy on 16 and 17 May pledged US$3 billion, the government said.

"Almost 90% of the aid pledged are grants," deputy finance minister Ranjith Siymbalapitiya told journalists after the conference.

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