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Saturday March 2nd, 2024

Sri Lanka exports rebound in June 2020 as Covid-19 controlled, PPE $100mn

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s exports in June 2019 was down 26 percent from a year earlier to 906.02 million US dollars, but extended a steep recovery seen in May after Coronavirus lockdown ended, the island’s Export Development Board said.

The EDB calculated PPE related exports at106.46 million US dollar in June 2020.

“Exports have become a national priority, now more than ever, it is certainly impressive to see a strong V-shaped recovery in the export sector, comparatively to the lowest point in April 2020, exports are up 327 percent,” Chairman Prabhash Subasinghe said.

He said there was a chance for a ‘favourable’ balance of trade.

A ‘favourable’ trade balance is a Mercantilist idea dating back to the British East India Company and beyond who did not understand the entire balance of payments and that services and capital inflows (government borrowings and private foreign investment) triggered imports.

A country which has weak or contracting credit, is in difficulties, does not get much FDI, or is repaying the foreign debt on a net basis can see a trade surplus.

Sri Lanka’s economic activities have recovered strongly with Coronavirus controlled by authorities with aggressive tracing and quarantined despite restrictions in testing which led to explosions of clusters.

However, due to excess money printing in March and April, Sri Lanka’s rupee came under pressure and the country is under Mercantilist import controls not seen even during a 30-year war when more classical economic knowledge prevailed.

Although total merchandise exports were down 16.4 percent from a year earlier in the six months to June, it was up 50.4 percent from May, the EDB said with some sectors seeing growth from last year in the month of June.

Coconut-based products were up 19 percent from a year earlier to 65 million US dollars, spices and essential oils were up 29 percent to 31 million US dollars ad fish and fisheries products were up 16 percent to 26 million US dollars.

Natural Rubber, Industrial & surgical gloves, Coconut cream, Coconut Milk, Coconut Vinegar, Coconut Shell Charcoal, Pineapples, Arecanuts, Tamarind, Ginger, Essential oils, lemons, and Sweat Potatoes were up, the EDB said.

Exports from apparel were down 20 percent in June to 402 million US dollars, but was up 83 percent from 218 million US dollars in May

Exports of tea were down only 1.5 percent from a year earlier and was up 6.14 percent from May.

(Colombo/July18/2020-sb)

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  1. Kiruben says:

    This should be understood with easter attacks on april 21st

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  1. Kiruben says:

    This should be understood with easter attacks on april 21st

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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