President Ranil Wickremesinghe revealed the government’s intention to conduct a thorough study regarding the potential abolition of the University Grants Commission (UGC) during a meeting with the representatives of the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA) yesterday.
He also stressed the importance of restructuring the entire university system in Sri Lanka, aligning it with models employed by reputable international institutions such as Deakin University and the University of California, to enhance the quality of higher education.
He also acknowledged the challenging economic conditions faced by the nation and affirmed the government’s commitment to promptly address these issues, providing relief to the public.
The primary focus of this meeting was to address the pressing issue of increasing research allowances for university lecturers and seeking exemption from taxation upon earning this allowance. Additionally, key issues concerning the future of Sri Lanka’s university system were discussed.
Recognising that the current allowances were insufficient to support the research efforts of the teaching staff, he stressed the importance of revising these allowances to promote quality research within Sri Lanka’s higher education institutions.
The President encouraged officials to explore the feasibility of issuing a new circular that would exempt the allowance from existing tax policies if necessary to rectify the situation.