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Friday July 12th, 2024

Sri Lanka Railways asks squatters to register online

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka Railways has asked people living on land own by the Department to register online before July 15, in a move to legitimize them.

“All unauthorized occupants who do not register by that date will be removed from railway premises.”

Users of land owned by the Department and new applicants should register online at http://pms.railway.gov.lk.

Squatters will be leased the land after an assessment, Minister of Transport and Highways and Mass Media Bandula Gunawardena said earlier this year.

The Railways Department owns the largest amount of land in the country.

“I have obtained cabinet approval to have the land and property occupied by squatters for over 10 years assessed, and then sign a lease agreement with them,” Gunawardena had said.

“All squatters who have been there less than 10 years will be prosecuted. Land grabbing now is useless.” Gunawardena was speaking at the inauguration of the Assistant Commercial Superintendent’s office in Nawalapitiya.

“Squatters have to come to this office immediately and file appeals and get the properties assessed; an appeal will be heard on what’s going on. Those who have been there for more than 10 years should verify their identity and pay taxes.”

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has funded a 120-unit apartment complex in Kottawa to relocate squatters living on Railways lands along its Kelani valley line at an estimated cost of 1.3 billion rupees, without taxes.

The relocation project is in line with railway efficiency improvements, which necessitated the removal of squatters residing along the lines from Maharagama to Padukka. (Colombo/Jun19/2024)

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Sri Lanka appoints new Attorney General

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s President Ranil Wickremesinghe has appointed K A Parinda Ranasinghe PC as Attorney General.

He was appointed in terms of Article 61E (b) of the Constitution of Sri Lanka, the president’s media division said.

The new AG received the appointment from President Wickremesinghe at the Presidential Secretariat on Friday.

He fills the post after the retirement of former Attorney General Sanjay Rajaratnam. (Colombo/Jul12/2024)

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Sri Lanka rupee closes stronger at 301.70/302.00 to US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed stronger at 301.70/302.00 to the US dollar on Friday, from 302.80/303.00 to the US dollar on Thursday, dealers said, while bond yields were up.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2026 closed at 10.90/11.00 percent, up from 10.85/95 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2027 closed at 11.75/80 percent, up from 11.80/88 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.05.2028 closed at 11.90/12.00 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2029 closed at 12.10/30 percent, up from 12.15/25 percent. (Colombo/Jul12/2024)

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Sri Lanka stocks close up, muted activity

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange closed up on Friday, data on its site showed.

The broader All Share Index closed up 0.35 percent, or 41.71 points, at 11,843; while the more liquid S&P SL20 Index closed up 0.56 percent, or 19.20 points, at 3,454.

Turnover was low at 653 million.

“The market picked up a bit from yesterday but it’s still below the psychological 12,000 mark,” Softlogic Stockbrokers said.

“Local retail participation drove the market predominantly.”

John Keells Holdings Plc brought in Rs109mn to the turnover, and the share closed flat at 194.50.

Melstacorp Plc contributed in Rs104mn to the turnover, and the share closed flat at 85.00.

Sentiment around the banking counters was mostly negative. Sampath Bank Plc closed down at 77.00, closed flat at 101.25, and Hatton National Bank Plc closed flat at 195.25.

The top contributors to the ASPI were Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc (up at 103.50), Bukit Darah Plc (up at 397.00), and Hayleys Plc (up at 101.00).

Foreign participation remained low as well. There was a higher net foreign outflow of 101 million.

“Foreign selling was seen on John Keells Holdings, and banking counters; Hatton National Bank Plc (down at 195.00), Pan Asia Banking Corporation Plc (down at 20.70), and Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc.

There was selective foreing interest on the diversified financials sector, particularly in companies that had vehicle leasing portfolios. “We think this might be due to the news of the vehicle import ban possibly ending.”

LOLC Holdings Plc closed up at 440.50, People’s Leasing and Finance Plc closed up at 12.20.

Softlogic Holdings Plc which announced the date of its rights issue, closed up at 8.50. (Colombo/Jul12/2024)

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