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Saturday March 2nd, 2024

Invest Sri Lanka to bring 1,000 local and global investors together

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka plans to bring around 1000 foreign and local investors to a one platform to discuss the potential investment opportunities in the country in an Investment forum 2021, officials said.

“It is in one hand an opportunity for Sri Lanka in spanning the private and public sector listed corporates as well as unlisted corporates’ investment opportunities to be showcase to the world,” Chairman of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Hans Wijesuriya said.

“And on the other hand it is an opportunity for global investors to showcase themselves to the Sri Lanka business community.”

Sri Lanka Ceylon Chambers of Commerce, the Board of Investments and Colombo Stock Exchange is holding a three-day virtual investment forum to inform investors about the potential foreign direct investments as well in listed companies and private equity.

The forum will be conducted virtually from June 07,2021- June 09,2021.
More information will be available on https://invest-srilanka.lk/ .

“We aim to attract 1000 foreign investors to come and participate in this forum representing wide variety of investments,” Wijesuriya said.

“We also aim to put together a funnel of potential investments which is at least five times more of our national target on annual basis.”

The forum will focus on manufacturing, ICT, hospitality and tourism, agriculture and food processing, construction, infrastructure and logistics.

“Why we are doing this is because Sri Lanka is at inflection point,” Chairman of Board of Investments Sanjaya Mohottala said.

“We are looking to double our GDP in the next 10 years. We are around 4000 dollars on GDP per capita. As the country intend to grow 5 – 6 percent post-Covid this creates that investment opportunity comes in once for a country.

He said in the last 6 to 7 months Sri Lanka has taken several initiatives to create a more conducive investment structure with tax relief, investment incentives and de-regulation.

“This conference is to bring in key individual, the policy makers, the industrialists, the key opinion leaders to talk about Sri Lankan economy, policy changes and to give a holistic view to all our investors what a great investment opportunity Sri Lanka is,” Mohottala said.

A pharma zone with pre-environment clearance, tax breaks for pharma companies to strengthen supply chain, a dedicated fabric park to achieve supply chain resilience by localizing raw material imports has been initiated.

The government is to achieve incremental tourism revenue of six billion dollars per annum by 2025.

Sri Lanka intends to strengthen its place as the solid tyre capital of the world with further opportunities for large investments,multiple stock exchanges, airlines, theme parks and banks run on code developed in Sri Lank will be among the attractions, he said.

The event intends to attract direct and portfolio investors including sovereign wealth funds, private equity funds, development finance institutions, large multinationals and conglomerates and high net worth individuals. (Colombo/May27/2021)

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Sri Lanka eyes SOE law by May 2024 for better governance

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is planning to pass a Public Commercial Business (PCB) Act improve governance of state-owned enterprise by May 2024 as part of an anti-corruption efforts following an International Monetary Fund assessment.

Sri Lanka’s state enterprises have been used by politicians to give ‘jobs of the boys’, appropriate vehicles for personal use, fill board of directors and key positions with henchmen and relatives, according to critics.

Meanwhile macro-economists working for the state also used them to give off-budget subsides or made energy utilities in particular borrow through supplier’s credits and state banks after forex shortages are triggered through inflationary rate cuts.

The government has taken billons of dollars of loans given to Ceylon Petroleum Corporation from state banks.

There have also been high profile procurement scandals connected to SOEs.

An SOE Reform Policy was approved by Sri Lanka’s cabinet of ministers in May 2023.

The Public Commercial Business (PCB) Act has now been drafted.

A holding company to own the SOEs will be incorporated and an Advisory Committee and Board of Directors will be appointed after the PCB law is approved, the statement said. (Colombo/Mar01/2024)

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Sri Lanka rupee closes at 308.80/90 to the US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed at 308.80/90 to the US dollar Friday, from 309.50/70 on Thursday, dealers said.

Bond yields were broadly steady.

A bond maturing on 01.02.2026 closed at 10.65/75 percent up from 10.50/70 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2027 closed at 11.90/12.05 percent from 11.90/12.10 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2028 closed at 12.15/35 percent down from 12.20/25 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.07.2029 closed at 12.25/40 percent up from 12.30/45 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.05.2030 closed at 12.30/45 percent down from 12.35/50 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2032 closed at 12.50/13.00 percent from 12.55/13.00 percent. (Colombo/Mar1/2024)

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Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.37-pct, Expo to de-list

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange closed up 0.37 percent on Friday, and SG Holdings, the parent company of Expolanka Holdings Plc, said it was taking the company private.

Expolanka is the largest listed company on the Colombo Stock Exchange.

“Expolanka Holdings PLC has, at the Board Meeting held on 1st March 2024, considered a request from its principal shareholder and resolved to initiate the de-listing of the Company’s shares from the Official List of the Colombo Stock Exchange subject to obtaining necessary shareholder approval and regulatory approvals,” the company said in a stock exchange filing.

As per arrangements with SG Holdings Global Pte Ltd, the Company’s majority shareholder, it will purchase its shares from shareholders who may wish to divest their shareholding in the Company at a purchase price of Rs 185.00 per share. The share closed up at 150.50.

The broader All Share Index closed up 0.37 percent, or 39.47 points, at 10,691; while the S&P SL20 Index closed down 0.64 percent, or 19.59 points, at 3,037.

Turnover stayed above the 1 billion mark for the sixth consecutive day, registering 1.4 billion.

Crossings in Melstarcorp Plc (135mn) up at 89.50, Hatton National Bank Plc (64mn) up at 158.00, Hemas Holdings Plc (53mn) up at 75.00 and Central Finance Company Plc (26mn) up at 103.50, added significantly to the day’s turnover.

“The upward trend is continuing, with more retail buying also coming in, the number of trades was more than 10,000 today,” a market participant said. “Investors are looking for undervalued stocks and buying in quantities.” (Colombo/Mar1/2024).

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