Ravi Karunanayake

Qualifications Mar 23, 2020

Political Career

Enters the portal of Sri Lankan politics in 1988 under the able guidance and leadership of his political guru Late Hon. Lalith Athulathmudali, former Cabinet Minister and erudite scholar.

Year 1994, nominated as a Member of Parliament to the Parliament of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. Following the footsteps of many illustrious Sri Lankan politicians, who decided to switch affiliation due to policy issues, on principle, decides to serve the nation as an independent Member of Parliament from 1995.

With the dissolution of the Sri Lanka Parliament in 1999, was invited by Sri Lanka’s pioneer political Party the United National Party to seek election from the constituency of Kotte, which is the administrative capital of Sri Lanka. Elected to the Parliament with a huge mandate from the Colombo District and continues to be a shining beacon in national politics.

His professional background as a qualified Chartered Management Accountant and a top-notch entrepreneur earns him many accolades in serving the nation as a Member of Parliament, Cabinet Minister and a powerful member of the opposition.

The interim budget presented by him on 29th January 2015 on the assumption of office as the Minister of Finance created history as the budget, which provided the greatest number of revolutionary reliefs to the people of Sri Lanka.

The interim Budget was presented within a period of seventeen days of assuming office thus proving his versatility in the arena of finance and commerce.

A true people’s budget for 2017 formulated within a consultative process particularly with inputs from the general public. The Ministry of Finance under his guidance initiated the “Citizens engagement in the budgetary process - 2017” a novel approach and a first in the history of budget formulation.

His rise to political fame provides him the impetus to the reach the present status of Assistant Leader of the United National Party and the Finance Minister of Sri Lanka.

An extended version of his political dynasty appears below in chronological order.

1994 - Youngest member to be nominated from the National List to the Parliament of Sri Lanka’s 10th Parliament

2000 - Elected to Parliament from Colombo District receiving more than 145,000 votes.

2001 - Elected to 12th Parliament of Sri Lanka

2001 - December 12th. Appointed as the Cabinet Minister Trade, Commerce & Consumer Affairs.

2005 - Elected to 13th Parliament of Sri Lanka

2010 - Elected to 14th Parliament of Sri Lanka

2015 - January 12th. Appointed as the Cabinet Minister of Finance

2016 – May 22nd. Appointed as the Cabinet Minister of Foreign Affairs

2018 – December 21st. Appointed as the Cabinet Minister of Power, Energy & Business Development

Significant Political Achievements

Enters Parliament on the 25th of August 1994 as a Member of Parliament and has served the nation in this capacity four times.

Cabinet Minister of Trade, Commerce & Consumer Affairs.

Appointed as the Chairman – Foreign Affairs Committee for the United National Party.

Appointed as the United National Party Leader for the Colombo District, the nerve center of economic and administrative governance in Sri Lanka.

Chairman of Institute for Democracy and Leadership

National Organizer for Sri Lanka of the United National Party

Assistant Leader of the United National Party

Cabinet Minister of Finance


Presented with the award for Young Outstanding Politician of the year in 1999 at the National event organized by the International Jaycees.

Awarded the "Best Finance Minister" in Asia-Pacific for 2017 by The Banker, the premier monthly magazine on global finance since 1926, and owned by the world-renowned Financial Times group. In particular for the ability to secure the $1.5bn IMF loan, the hike in the national VAT and efforts to reform the local tax system and Sri Lanka’s ability to tap international bond markets.

Other Achievements

Has been a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (FCMA) since December 1994 and a Fellow of the Institute of Certified Management Accountants (FCMA) since June 2009.

Active Member of the Federation of the Chamber Movement in order to strengthen the industrial and the business enterprises in Sri Lanka.

Elected as the Politician and Public Administrator of the year in 1999 by the Colombo Jaycees.

A regular contributor to the national print media in respect of the following;

Economic Affairs


Business Management

Political Culture

Public Finance & taxation in Sri Lanka & abroad in various prestigious professional Media Institutions and Associations.

Also participates on national television and radio programs being equally proficient in Sinhala and English, mainly focusing on topics relating to Business, Politics and Economic Affairs.

Management Career

Has served many leading mercantile sector establishments in accounting and management spheres spanning a period of over 25 years.

Professional Qualifications

Chartered Management Accountant - FCMA - Fellow member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (UK), FSCMA, CMA (Canada)

Schools Attended:

St. Thomas Preparatory School – 1968 to 1978

Royal College, Colombo – 1978 to 1982

Passed G.C.E. Ordinary Level & Advanced Level


Represented Sri Lanka’s premier Educational Institute Royal College as a member of the 1st Eleven Cricket Team.