Sri Lanka


Region: South Asia

Population: 21,354,570

Capital: Colombo

GDP (Million US$): $88,901

General climate: The climate is tropical and consists of very distinctive dry and wet seasons. The weather is warm, but is moderated by ocean winds and moisture

INFORM Risk Rating: 3.6

Risk Summary

– Prone to floods, landslides, cyclones, droughts, wind storms, coastal erosions, tsunamis, sea surges and the threat of sea level rise
– Droughts have affected 20 of 25 districts and around 1.8 million people since 2016. Droughts further cut rice harvests by 50% in 2017
– Floods are the most frequently occurring hazard. Heavy rainfall, deforestation, improper land use, the lack of scientific soil conservation practices, rapid urbanization and insufficient drainage systems, are all contributing factors for floods.

Organizational Structure for Disaster Management

National Council for Disaster Management (NCDM)
The NCDM is mandated by the Sri Lanka Disaster Management Act No. 13 of 2005 to lead in disaster management, working alongside the Ministry of Disaster Management. The NCDM itself does not hold a functional role.

Ministry of Disaster Management
The Ministry is responsible for implementing disaster prevention and mitigation projects; planning and implementing disaster preparedness activities; issuing and disseminating early warning messages; developing regional cooperation schemes; capacity developing of key stakeholders; conducting disaster management awareness and training programs; and facilitating coordination between key partners involved in disaster management. The Ministry also formulates policies, programs and projects on disaster management.

Disaster Management Centre (DMC)
Acts as the executive arm of the NCDM by collaborating and coordinating with relevant government agencies on disaster risk reduction. The Disaster Management Centre primarily focuses on developing and implementing the National Disaster Management Plan and the National Emergency Operation Plan.

National Building Research Organization
The National Building Research Organizations promotes disaster mitigation, preparedness and safety through research, education and training from a technological perspective.

National Disaster Relief Centre (NDRC)
Handles preparation, response and recovery through planning and implementation programs to ensure the impacts of disasters can be met while monitoring, coordinating and evaluation disaster response activities.

National Disaster Management Policy and Plan

National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) has been revised to take into consideration aspects of climate change and extreme weather effects. The new version will also incorporate focus on DRR investments under the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

National Policy on Disaster Management is the core component of Sri Lanka’s disaster management approach. The policy outlines principles and outcomes for disaster management to ensure coordination of stakeholders and minimize duplication of efforts. The policy was formulated following the 2004 tsunamic and other relevant disasters to ensure reduced human and economic disaster impacts in future.


Disaster Management Centre
Find out more