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Wednesday February 1st, 2023

Sri Lanka MP Namal Rajapaksa denies allegations of corruption, promises legal action

FILE PHOTO – President Gotabaya Rajapaksa with nephew Namal at the opening of the last part of the Southern Expressway/PMD

ECONOMYNEXT – Former Sports Minister Namal Rajapaksa on Tuesday (03) denied a series of allegations of corruption levelled against the ruling Rajapaksa family and its associates by opposition Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) leader Anura Kumara Dissanayake in a major telivised public exposé.

“We will take legal action as some of [the allegations] are already being investigated and some cases are ongoing,” Rajapaksa told EconomyNext Tuesday afternoon.

“These are the same accusations made by them in 2015 when Hon Anura Kumara was part of the Dushana Mardana Committee (Anti-Corruption Committee) at [the official residence of the prime minister] Temple Trees that decided whom they should file legal cases [against] which included members from the Attorney General’s department and all political parties,” he said.

At an event in Colombo Tuesday morning, JVP leader Dissanayake disclosed details of a series of corruption scandals that he claimed involved the Rajapaksa family and its associates over several years.

Namal Rajapaksa himself was arrested during the previous government and is still facing court cases.

A special Financial Crimes Investigation Department (FCID) that was established by the previous government to investigate cases of financial fraud and other major white collar crimes was dismantled by the Rajapaksa family after it returned to power in 2019. (Colombo/May03/2022)

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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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