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Wednesday September 27th, 2023

Sri Lanka COVID-19 update: 75 new patients today; 69 from new cluster

ECONOMYNEXT – Seventy-five new COVID-19 patients were identified in Sri Lanka as at 11.30am today (05), the National Operations Centre for the Prevention of COVID-19 (NOCPOC) said.

Out of the 75 patients, five are returnees from abroad –  two having returned from Dubai, two from the UAE and one from Ukraine, while the rest are the garment factory worker from Divulapitiya in the Gampaha district who tested positive for the novel coronavirus yesterday and her direct contacts.

At least 950 people who had maintained direct or indirect contact with the female garment factory worker have been identified so far, the Public Health Inspectors Union of Sri Lanka (PHIUSL) said.

With the new cases, total confirmed COVID-19 patients in the island has risen to 3,470. Some 42 individuals are currently under investigation in hospitals, with 131 active cases.

Four Sri Lankan patients who had arrived from abroad returned home upon recovery as at 6am today, bringing total recoveries in Sri Lanka to 3,258.

The number of patients reported from the Kandakadu cluster is 650, out of which 529 are detainees, 67 are staff, five are invited staff members, 48 are close contacts and one is a close contact of the patient found at the Welikada prison.

A total of 648 have recovered from the Kandakadu cluster while two patients are still undergoing treatment.

By this morning, 449 returnees arrived in Colombo, 142 of whom flew in from Doha, Qatar, 27 from India and 280 from Narita, Japan NOCPOC said, adding that all returnees will be directed to military-run quarantine centres.

Some 35 people ended their quarantine at military-run centres yesterday, according to NOCPOC. A total of 48,583 people have completed quarantine so far.

Meanwhile, the number of people in quarantine in 72 centres run by the armed forces is 6,894.

A total of 295,463 PCR tests have been conducted in the island so far with 1,490 tests carried out yesterday.

Sri Lanka as at October 05 records 13 COVID-19 related deaths.

Officials said the Covid Prevention Task Force is now investigating three-clusters of possible COVID-19 patients related to the discovery of the patient in Divulapitiya and as of now 69 cases have been discovered so far in these areas.

“We have tested 80 people who had direct contact with the first patient and 69 have been shown as positive for COVID-19,” NOCPOC spokesman Colonel Vijitha Hettiarachchi said.

The towns of Minuwangoda, Divulapitiya and Veyangoda are under police curfew, he added. (Colombo/October 05/2020)

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Sri Lanka to introduce social security system: minister

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Labour minister has said that they are set to introduce a comprehensive national social security system, covering all workers.

“The system will address the weaknesses of the current system and provide much-needed support to workers and their families,” Manusha Nanayakkara, Minister of Labour and Foreign Employment said on X (formerly known as Twitter).
He did not specify the details.

Nanayakkara also spoke of the need for robust social security when he met with exporters last week to discuss labor law reforms, boosting female workforce participation and attracting FDI.

Sri Lanka plans to reform labour laws for an export-oriented economy.

The pandemic and the economic crisis highlighted the need to improve the coverage of social security.

Studies have shown that Sri Lanka’s women are kept out of formal employment by childcare, elderly care and housework, as day care and elderly homes are either too expensive or too few.

The government imposed a Social Security Contribution Levy to increase its revenue last year. (Colombo/Sep27/2023)

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Sri Lanka’s stocks up in trading on Wednesday morning

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka shares were picking up in trading on Wednesday morning.

Turnover was at 50 million. Trading in the Capital Goods Industry Group was driving turnover.

The All Share Price Index was up 0.37 percent or 41.78 points to 11,289.94, while the S&P SL20 was also up 0.68 percent or 21.66 points to 3,187.65.

Hatton National Bank, Commercial Bank and LOLC saw gains in morning trade, while Tokyo cement and Lanka Hospitals were trading down during morning trading. (Colombo/Sep27/2023)

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Sri Lanka rupee opens at 323.50/324.10 to the US dollar, bond yields stable

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee opened at 323.50/324.10 to the US dollar on Wednesday, after closing on Tuesday at 323.70/324.20 to the US dollar, dealers said.

A bond maturing on 01.08.2026 was quoted at 15.50/70 percent on Wednesday up from Tuesday’s close at 15.45/65 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.05.2028 was quoted at 14.50/55 percent from closing at Tuesday at 14.30/55 percent. (Colombo/Sep27/2023)

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