An Echelon Media Company
Friday August 19th, 2022

Sri Lanka MCC grant terminated by US

ECONOMYNEXT – Washington-based Millennium Challenge Corporation said it has ended a 480 million dollar grant to Sri Lanka, which was not taken up by the island’s current administration.

The MCC board said it had “discontinued the proposed compact with Sri Lanka.”

“On December 15, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) board decided to discontinue the proposed Rs. 89 billion MCC development assistance grant to Sri Lanka due to lack of partner country engagement,” the US embassy in Colombo said.

“The Rs. 89 billion approved for Sri Lanka will be made available to other eligible partner countries in need of grant funding to pursue their economic development priorities, reduce poverty, and grow their economies.

“Country ownership, transparency, and accountability for grant results are fundamental to MCC’s development model.

“These grants have lifted millions of people from poverty by catalyzing local and domestic investment.

“The United States remains a friend and partner to Sri Lanka and will continue to assist Sri Lanka in responding to COVID and building its economy.”

MCC had given grants to 30 countries worldwide on 38 totaling nearly 13.5 billion dollars the embassy said.

The MCC grant approved for Sri Lanka was to upgrade urban transport, land registration and also builds several key rural road links to highways became embroiled in multiple conspiracy theories in the run up to the 2019 elections.

The then opposition claimed that it would undermine the sovereignty of the country, force the country into defence deals with the US, get the country involved in a ‘economic corridor’ to transport US troops.

The modernization of the land registry was claimed to be a way to sell land to foreigners.

The then administration and the MCC denied the allegations and offered to amend the agreement if to address any perceived concerns.

Approved grants have to be ratified in the parliament of the country before money is released.

MCC says grants are made to countries that “meet rigorous standards for good governance, from fighting corruption to respecting democratic rights, as evaluated by MCC’s scorecard.”

The MCC board said it had approved grants to Sierra Leone, Kribati and Solomon Islands. (Colombo/Dec17/2020 – Updated with US embassy comments)

Comments (6)

Your email address will not be published.

  1. sacre blieu says:

    Most such cpuntry agreem nets and aid must not be taken at face value. There is always that hidden clause which works in favor of the grantor that subjects the receiving country to various types of humiliation and enslavement. Ultimately the social fabric becomes rotten and that society losses its character coming from ages of culture and refinement, to be subject to base desire of the beneficiary country.

    1. JP says:

      We can see what the new regime will bring. Pestilence, poverty and hunger so far. Death eventually.

  2. Rajah Miranda says:

    Now developing country and poor countries expect USA to depreciate US Dollar currency exchange rate by 90%
    as Europe & USA economies are under performing due to covid -19
    poor countries borrowing from IMF is set of balance of payment deficit
    International currency exchange rate is 1 USD =RS. 187 sri lanka Rufee
    This is unfair injustice.

  3. Percy DeZoysa says:

    Correction. Washington-based Millennium Challenge Corporation did not ended the agreement. Sri Lanka terminated the MCC trap last year by refusing to sign it. My hats off to Sri Lanka’s new administration by not letting the country be another U.S. territory. Well Done Mr. Rajapaksa!
    – Anura Zoysa

View all comments (6)

Comments (6)

Your email address will not be published.

  1. sacre blieu says:

    Most such cpuntry agreem nets and aid must not be taken at face value. There is always that hidden clause which works in favor of the grantor that subjects the receiving country to various types of humiliation and enslavement. Ultimately the social fabric becomes rotten and that society losses its character coming from ages of culture and refinement, to be subject to base desire of the beneficiary country.

    1. JP says:

      We can see what the new regime will bring. Pestilence, poverty and hunger so far. Death eventually.

  2. Rajah Miranda says:

    Now developing country and poor countries expect USA to depreciate US Dollar currency exchange rate by 90%
    as Europe & USA economies are under performing due to covid -19
    poor countries borrowing from IMF is set of balance of payment deficit
    International currency exchange rate is 1 USD =RS. 187 sri lanka Rufee
    This is unfair injustice.

  3. Percy DeZoysa says:

    Correction. Washington-based Millennium Challenge Corporation did not ended the agreement. Sri Lanka terminated the MCC trap last year by refusing to sign it. My hats off to Sri Lanka’s new administration by not letting the country be another U.S. territory. Well Done Mr. Rajapaksa!
    – Anura Zoysa

Sri Lanka schedules 3-hour power cuts for Aug 20, 21: regulator

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will impose power cuts of up to three hours on Saturday August 20 and Sunday August 21, Public Utilities Commission (PUCSL) Chairman Janaka Ratnayake said.

All areas (A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V and W) will have power cuts of 1 hours and 40 minutes between 10.30 am and 06.00 pm and 1 hour 20 minutes from 06.00pm to 10.00 pm.

Click here for a detailed schedule.

The state-run Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) said supply interruption time and restoration time will vary within 30 minutes as indicated above.

Sri Lanka’s daily scheduled power cuts that were reduced to one hour in July with power generation from hydro power plants contributing more than 50 percent to the main grid reducing thermal power plant use was extended to three hours last week due to a breakdown at the Norochcholai coal power plant.

According to officials, the breakdown happened in Unit 1 of Norochcholai which will take around two weeks to repair.

The Minister of Power & Energy said Unit 2 is undergoing scheduled maintenance work while Unit 3 will continue to operate. West Coast and other fuel power pPlants will be used to manage the supply, the ministry said. (Colombo/Aug02/2022)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka guidance peg edges T-bond yield edge down

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka Central Bank’s guidance peg for interbank transactions edged down on Friday (19), while yields in Treasury bonds picked up slightly and in T-bill remain unquoted in dull trade, a day after the Central Bank announced the policy rates will remain stable, dealers said.

A bond maturing on 01. 06. 2025 closed at 27.95/28.05 percent on Friday, slightly up from 27.90/28.00 percent on Thursday.

No T-bills were quoted on Friday, dealers said.

Meanwhile Sri Lanka’s central bank announced a guidance peg for interbank transactions further weakened by three cents to 361.00 rupees against the US dollar on Friday from 360.97 rupees.

Data showed that commercial banks offered dollars for telegraphic transfers between 368.00 and 370.00 for small transactions.  (Colombo/ Aug 19/2022)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka records 10 new COVID-19 deaths in 48 hours as case numbers rise

ECONOMYNEXT –  Sri Lanka recorded 10 COVID-19 deaths in the 48 hours from August 17 to 19 taking the country’s pandemic death toll to 16,640, health ministry data showed.

Sri Lanka is experiencing a slight increase in COVID-19 cases with the relaxation of public health restrictions relating to face masks and public gatherings.

Health authorities said the situation will be monitored constantly and have asked the general public to continue to follow basic hygiene measures in order to control the spread of the virus again in the community.

In August alone 2,924 new cases were recorded in Sri Lanka, with 84 deaths attributed to the disease.

So far in 2022, from January onward, health authorities have identified 81,157 patients to date.

Epidemiology unit data showed that 874 patients are currently receiving treatment, out of which 716 are receiving home based care.

The spread of the virus has increased with the use of public transport rising after an easing of a fuel crisis.

Sri Lanka is also facing difficulties in securing essential medicine supplies for the health sector due to a forex shortage.

Health officials said if the number of COVID-19 patients rise to a level the health sector cannot manage,  with the added issues of fuel and medical shortages, the health system might collapse.

“It is the responsibility of us all. There is no use trying to forcibly control people. We all have the responsibility to reduce or stop the spread of the virus before it gets out of control. We have been living with it for the past two years,” Deputy Director General of Health Services Dr Hemantha Herath said. (Colombo/Aug19/2022)

Continue Reading