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Sri Lanka sees link between bond investment advisories and UN rights pressure

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka saw a link between pressure to improve human rights and accountability in by a United Nations body and recent reports on the islands sovereign bond risks, Central Bank Governor W D Lakshman said.

Many individuals and institutions had made adverse comments regarding Sri Lanka’s economic management and prospects.

“In the last couple of weeks alone, three institutions, Standard Chartered, Barclays and ICRA published damaging reports,” Governor Lakshman told on online forum by Veemansa, a Colombo based think tank.

“It is no coincidence that these three reports came one after the other during the period when one of the international, global events restricting Sri Lanka is taking place in the Human Rights Council.

“I think It is no coincidence.”

The UN rights chief also released a new report on Sri Lanka human rights, war crimes and treatment of minorities ahead of meetings in February.

Sri Lanka is also under fire for forced cremations of Muslims and Christian victims of Coronavirus, claiming that the water table would be contaminated if they were buried.

Political analysts had expected more pressure to curb nationalism in Sri Lanka after President Donald Trump, a white nationalists was defeated by Joe Biden who is supporting better treatment of black Americans and minorities.

Sri Lanka’s bond yields have plunged as money printing weakened a currency peg, triggered downgrades and forex reserves continued to erode.

Governor Lakshman assured than a billion dollar international sovereign bond due in July would be repaid and the country will maintain its unblemished record in debt repayment.

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Sri Lanka has sufficient reserves to repay the bond at the moment, but concern has risen over the pace of reserve erosion, prompting calls for corrective policies to address interest rates, excess liquidity and budgets.

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Sri Lanka central bank buying US$10mn dollars a day from market: CB Governor

Sri Lanka forex debt owed to non-residents only US$3.7bn in 2021: CB Governor

Sri Lanka has since imposed surrender rules on remittances and export receipts to shore up reserves. (Colombo/Feb25/2021)

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