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Wednesday February 1st, 2023

Sri Lanka halts inbound passengers from May 23

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka halts inbound passengers from May 23 to 31 to help contain a third coronavirus wave, a senior airport official said.

“Inbound passengers will not be allowed to disembark in the Sri Lankan airports starting from May 23 to 31,” Shehan Sumanasekara, Chief Director-Operations (All Airports), Airport and Aviation Services (Sri Lanka) told EconomyNext.

“However, passengers who are departing can go but not a single airline can bring any travellers in.”

The ban will come into effect from May 23 at 11.59 pm to May 31, 11.59 pm.

This directive applies to Sri Lankan citizens and to tourists.

Regarding transit passengers, Sumanasekara said they can move via Sri Lankan airports however excluding travellers from India.

Other than travellers from India, all passengers will be allowed to transit only if it less than 12 hours and if they have a confirmed onwards destination visa.

“Passengers transiting via Sri Lankan airports for less than 12-hours considering they are holding an onwards destination ticket will be allowed,” Sumanasekara said.

Sri Lanka is in the middle of a third coronavirus wave putting pressure on health and quarantine facilities.

To contain the outbreak the island has placed internal movement controls.

The country has seen a surge in daily cases over the past few weeks, forcing authorities to impose movement restrictions that amount to unofficial island-wide curfews with brief intervals.

On May 18 the country reached 1,000 COVID deaths and the total confirmed COVID-19 infections in Sri Lanka has reached 141,374.


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Sri Lanka bond yields down at close

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s bond yields were down at close following a bond auction on Wednesday, dealers said while a guidance peg for interbank transactions remained unchanged.

“The rates were steady at the auction,” a dealer said.

“This can be a signal to the market saying the rates will go down in the future.”

A bond maturing on 01.07.2025 closed at 32.40/60 percent, down from yesterday’s 32.60/85 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.05.2027 closed at 29.10/35 marginally down from yesterday’s 29.20/75 percent.

The Central Bank’s guidance peg for interbank US dollar transactions remained unchanged at 362.14 rupees against the US dollar.

Commercial banks offered dollars for telegraphic transfers at 371.38 rupees on Friday, data showed. (Colombo/Feb 01/2022)

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Sri Lanka bill auction hits pothole after 2025 bond spike

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka sold only 45 billion rupees in Treasury bills at Wednesday’s auction after offering 120 billion rupees, data from the state debt office showed, amid market confusion over a spike in a two year bond at an earlier action.

30.1 billion rupees of 3-month bills were sold at 29.91 percent, unchanged from a week earlier after offering 60 billion rupees for auction.

5.1 billion rupees of 6-month bills were sold at 28.72 percent, flat after offering 30 billion.

10.3 billion rupees of 12-month bills were sold at 27.72 percent after offering 30 billion.

Phase II subscriptions have been opened.

The market was foxed after the 2025 bonds were accepted at sharply higher yield than market on January 30, dealer said.

There was further confusion as the there was an outright purchase of 2025 at around 29 percent earlier in January.

Some investors speculated that the authorities were trying to drive more buyers towards short end bonds as bill volumes were getting larger. (Colombo/Feb01/2023)

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Sri Lanka services exports down 5.9-pct in 2022

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s services exports were estimated to have fallen 5.9 percent to 1,876.3 million US dollars, the island’s Export Development Board said.

Services exports estimated is made up of ICT/BPM, construction, financial services, transport and logistics.

There are more than 500 ICT companies, the EDB said.

Sri Lanka’s merchandise exports were up 4.6 percent to US dollars 13.1 billion dollars in 2022 from 2021.

Sri Lanka’s goods exports are slowing amid lower growth in Western markets. (Colombo/ Feb 01/2023)

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