An Echelon Media Company
Saturday April 20th, 2024

Some operators cancelling Chinese group tours to Sri Lanka

Chinese tourists in Colombo, numbers are expected to drop as Beijing imposes restrictions on travel/Amitha Thennekoon economynext

ECONOMYNEXT- Some tour operators have begun cancelling bookings from China to Sri Lanka as Beijing banned group travel from yesterday.

A spokesman for Aitken Spence Travel Group told EconomyNext that the firm has cancelled all future bookings until further notice.

“We have cancelled all the future bookings from China from January 28, until further notice,” he said.

The Government of China banned group travels from China to other countries from January 27, AFP reported. 

From February 01, all travel agents in China are to stop organizing trips abroad, the report said. Those groups that have already left the country and individual travellers can continue with their journeys.

Hilton Colombo said a few groups of tourists have cancelled their bookings but other reservations are still remaining.

“Right now, we cannot say whether it is a huge or minor drop. Only two or three Chinese groups have cancelled yet. Others are still remaining,” a Hilton official told EconomyNext.

Cinnamon Grand and Kingsbury Hotel, Colombo said they have no cancellations from Chinese travellers.

“We do not have an issue like that yet. All the reservations are there” Cinnamon Grand officials said.

The Daily Mirror reported that Jetwing Travels and Walkers Tours are facing booking cancellations of Chinese tour groups over the weekend.

The Tourist Hotels Association President Sanath Ukwatte said a special meeting has been called by all the hoteliers to discuss the situation, with Sri Lankan Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) officials.

China is among the top three sources for tourists for Sri Lanka according to the SLTDA with 167,863 visitors, 9 percent of the total, holidaying in 2019.

Sri Lanka recorded a total of 78,212 travellers from China during the first three months of last year.

The virus, known as 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China.

Early on, many of the patients in the outbreak in Wuhan, China reportedly had some link to a large seafood and animal market, suggesting animal-to-person spread. 

However, a growing number of patients reportedly have not had exposure to animal markets, indicating that person-to-person spread is occurring.

Recent reports confirmed 106 deaths and 4,500 infected patients globally due to the virus. (Colombo/Jan28/2020)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sri Lanka discussing giving extra land, water for Chinese oil refinery

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is in discussions with China’s Sinopec to give extra land and assure water supplies after the company decided to expand the capacity of a planned oil refinery in Hambantota, Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said.

“There are concerns on how the water supply is going to be provided for the refinery,” Minister Wijesekera told reporters Friday.

The refinery will need more land and also revise conditions in a Board of Investment agreement, he said.

Read more
Sinopec to double capacity of new refinery in Sri Lanka’s Hambantota

Recommendations and decisions from Sri Lanka’s side had already been sent and Sinopec is expected to revert back in May.

“We are hoping to sign the agreement once everyone has agreed,” Wijesekara said.

The principle agreements are expected to be signed by June, he said.

The refinery could sell up to 10 percent of its output in the domestic market.

“There is no commitment by the government to purchase anything,” Minister Wijesekera said. (Colombo/Apr19/2024)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka rupee closes weaker at 302.00/50 to the US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed at 302.00/50 to the US dollar in the spot forex market on Friday, down from 301.50/302.00 a day earlier, dealers said.

There was increased demand for dollars after the central bank bought 715 million dollars from forex markets. In the previous two months it was buying on average about 200 million US dollars, leaving market participants and bank in a ‘oversold’ position.

There were some official dollars sales Friday dealers said.

READ Sri Lanka rupee quoted wide to US dollar as peg inconsistencies flare up

Bond yields were broadly steady.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2026 closed at 11.30/40 percent down from 11.35/40 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2027 closed at 11.95/12.05 percent up from 11.90/12.05 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2028 closed stable at 12.15/25 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2029 closed stable at 12.30/40 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.10.2032 closed stable at 12.40/50 percent. (Colombo/Apr19/2024)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka stocks close down, banks trade down

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange closed down on Friday, data on its site showed.

The broader All Share Index closed down 0.38 percent, or 44.80 points, at 11,753; while the S&P SL20 Index closed down 0.53 percent, or 18.46 points, at 3,456.

Turnover was at 1.4 billion. The diversified financials (Rs366mn) and banks (Rs266mn) sectors continued to see selling pressure.

“This was possibly due to uncertainty around the bond discussions,” market participants said.

With the exception of Sampath Bank Plc (up at 77.50) all other banks traded down in the day. Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc was down at 104.50, Hatton National Bank Plc was down at 188.50, and DFCC Bank Plc was down at 77.00.

LOLC Finance Plc saw the most trades and closed up at 6.40. Another LOLC company, Browns Investments Plc, also saw high traded volumes and closed up at 5.60.

Softlogic Capital Plc was up at 7.00, and Softlogic Holdings Plc was up at 11.20. A trading suspension imposed on SHL.N0000 was lifted effective today as the company submitted the annual report for the year ended 31st March 2023.

However, shares of the Company will remain in the Watch List “due to Qualified Audit Opinion and Emphasis of matter on going concern in the Independent Auditor’s Report in the Audited Financial Statements for the year ended 31st March 2022.”

Dialog Axiata Plc, which announced its merger with Bharti Airtel Thursday, saw its share price close up at 11.90.

“There was some traction on index heavyweights,” market participants pointed out.

Top contributors to the APSI included Aitken Spence Plc (up at 134.50), Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc (up at 1,245.25, and Lion Brewery (Ceylon) Plc (up at 1,048.50).

There was a net foreign inflow of 5 million. (Colombo/Apr19/2024)

Continue Reading