Sri Lanka is at present in a new phase of development, facing a different set of challenges, compared to several years ago. It has entered the league of middle income countries, and is set to achieve almost all the Millennium Development Goals by 2015. Its attainment of social indicators is well above those of most of its South-Asian neighbors. However, these significant achievements are also accompanied by enormous challenges. Years of civil conflict have made several provinces in the country lagging in terms of several social indicators, and in terms of suitable living conditions and livelihood opportunities not being in place. Development opportunities are skewed towards a few urban centers, resulting in migration to cities, and poor living standards in several rural based provinces. Prevailing inequalities and disparities have adversely impacted the growth potential, as well as the equitable human development of all people living in the country.
This Report highlights development differences among provinces and districts to the extent that data are available, focusing in particular on spatial disparities, across Sri Lanka’s population groups. The Report focuses on issues such as health, education, employment and governance, and draws out areas for action, while proposing potential interventions.