Joint opposition Parliamentarian Dullas Alahapperuma wished Samaraweera after raising a question in Parliament today.
Samaraweera asked for time to respond to the question, the first question put forward to him in Parliament after he was appointed Finance Minister yesterday.
Speaking later Samaraweera said that he was concerned the new shoes he needs to fit might be a difficult.
However he said he is prepared to take the challenge and an economy which was put back on track over the last two years by former Finance Minister and new Foreign Minister Ravi Karunanayake.
Samaraweera, meanwhile, said that Sri Lanka today has good foreign relations with all the countries around the world.
He said that Sri Lankan leaders today can visit any country as opposed to the barricades that were there when the former Government was in office.
The Minister said that Sri Lanka’s position in the international arena was clear last March when a majority of the countries backed Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.
He said that Sri Lanka was also able to obtain the GSP Plus trade concession from the European Union (EU) as a result of the good international relations Sri Lanka has established.
The Minister said that the current Government took office in 2015 when the economy was in shambles.
However he said former Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake worked hard at getting the economy back on track.
“My primary objective will be to transform the treasury,” Samaraweera added.
He said the private sector should be the engine of growth to harness the full potential of the country.
The Finance Minister said that it is now time for a new wave of reforms to make Sri Lanka the hub of the Indian ocean by 2020. (Colombo Gazette)