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Wednesday July 24th, 2024

Sri Lanka stocks down 4.13-pct

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks fell 4.13 percent on Tuesday with selling was seen in LOLC Holdings, Vallibel One and Browns Investments, Colombo Stock Exchange said.

Turnover was 4.2 billion rupees with 21 stocks gaining and 186 falling.

The Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index fell 326.36 points to close at 7,580.91.

The index fell throughout the day reaching an intraday low at 7,556.92 in the last hour into trading before picking up to close marginally high.

The S&P SL20 index of more liquid stocks fell 3.98 percent or 126.05 points to close at 3,037.54.

LOLC Holdings fell 79.75 rupees or 18.35 percent to close at 354.75 rupees contributing most for the ASPI fall.

LOLC Finance, fell 30 cents to close at 6.70 rupees, Browns investments fell 60 cents or 10.71 percent to close at 5.00 rupees and Brown and Company fell 21.50 rupees or 10.96 percent to close at 174.75 rupees.

John Keells Holdings fell 3.25 rupees to close at 156.75 rupees and Vallibel One fell 8.10 rupees or 11.57 percent to close at 61.90 rupees.

Melstacorp fell 3.00 rupees to close at 49.70 rupees and Expolanka Holdings closed 3.70 rupees down at 45.70 rupees a share.

Hayleys Plc closed 2.55 rupees down at 65.50 rupees share with key subsidiaries Dipped Products falling 6.20 rupees to close at 60.30 rupees and Haycarb Plc falling 10.43 rupees to close at 100.50 rupees.

The Kingsbury Plc closed 40 cents down at 12.10 rupees and Unisyst Engineering closed 10 cents down at 15.00 rupees while Singer Industries Ceylon closed 1.20 rupees up at 96.60 rupees.

Royal Ceramic Lanka closed 29.25 rupees down at 323.75 rupees, Lanka tiles fell 14.25 to close at 231.25 rupees and Lanka Wall tiles closed 18.50 rupees down at 243.00 rupees and Lanka Ceramic closed 14.50 rupees down at 141.00 rupees.

Hatton National Bank closed 3.25 rupees down at 136.75 rupees and Commercial Bank of Ceylon fell 2.60 rupees to close at 87.70 rupees.

DFCC Bank closed 2.20 rupees down at 63.20 rupees and Sampath bank closed 2.75 rupees down at 165.00 rupees.
Nations trust bank fell 1.10 rupees to close at 60.00 rupees, Seylan Bank closed 60 cents down at 51.50 rupees and

Pan Asia Banking Corporation fell 1.20 rupees to close at 16.70 rupees.

Central Finance Company fell 2.50 rupees to close at 97.50 rupees and Citizens Development Business Finance fell 3.00 rupee to close at 117.25 rupees Alliance Finance Company gained 1.60 rupees to close at 52.40 rupees.

Sinhaputhra Finance closed 40 cents up at 7.90 rupees, Softlogic finance closed 60 cents down at 10.50 rupees and Housing Development Finance fell 1.90 rupees to close at 38.00 rupees.

Cargills Ceylon fell 5.25 rupees to close at 234.50 rupees, Hemas Holdings fell 1.90 rupees to close at 86.20 rupees, Distilleries Company fell 80 cents to close at 20.10 and Ceylon Grain Elevators fell 18.25 rupees to close at 136.00 rupees.

In the hotel sector, Eden Hotel Lanka fell 20 cents to close at 11.00 rupees, Sigiriya Village hotel closed 50 cents down at 33.30 rupees, John Keels Hotels closed 10 cents down at 10.40 and Aitken Spence Hotel holdings fell 30 cents to close at 30.50.

Ceylon Tobacco Company closed flat at 1,085.00 rupees, Piramal Glass Ceylon closed 20 cents down at 9.30 rupees and Ceylon Cold stores closed 75 cents down at 663.75 rupees.

Carson Cumberbatch fell 8.00 rupees to close at 302.25 rupees while Access Engineering fell 1.00 rupees to close at 24.10 rupees.

Nestle Lanka closed 30.00 rupees up at 1,196.50 rupees while Aitken Spence Plc closed 2.60 rupees down at 61.90 rupees.

Sunshine Holdings fell 5.30 rupees to close at 80.20 rupees a share.

Sri Lanka Telecom closed 50 cents down at 36.40 rupees while Dialog Axiata closed flat at 12.50 rupees and Richard Pieris and Company closed 10 cents up at 16.00 rupees.

The Capital Goods Industry was the most active, fell 4.2 percent today. (Colombo/Feb16/2021)


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Sri Lanka presidential candidate cash deposits not updated in 43 years: MP

MP Dullas Alahapperuma

ECONOMYNEXT — The cash deposits Sri Lanka’s presidential candidates are required to pay have not been revised in 43 years, opposition MP Dullas Alahapperuma said, calling for a significant increase in order to save money and to prevent proxy candidates.

Alahapperuma told parliament on Wednesday July 24 that, as per the Presidential Elections Act No. 15 of 1981, a candidate nominated by a recognised political party has to deposit only 50,000 rupees while an independent candidate, or a candidate nominated by any other party or by an elector, must pay only 75,000 rupees.

The MP said the cabinet of former president Gotabaya Rajapaksa had approved an amendment to the act to increase these amounts.

“The election commission proposed that this be increased to 2.5 million rupees for political parties and 3 million for independent candidates. This was a pertinent proposal. There were 35 candidates who contested the last election,” he said.

The Act notes that “Where the number of votes polled by any candidate does not exceed one-eighth of the total number of votes polled at the election, the deposit made in respect of such candidate shall be declared forfeit and shall be transferred by the Commissioner from the deposit account to the Consolidated Fund, and in every other case the deposit shall be returned to the person who made the deposit, as soon as may be after the result of the election is declared.”

At the 2019 presidential election, said Alahapperuma, the deposits made by all candidates besides the top two contenders were transferred to the Consolidated fund.

“The number of candidates might be 80 or 85 this election. Many candidates have no basis for contesting, and it costs a vast sum of money to print ballots and other expenses, not to mention the time consumed for counting votes. This is not just to prevent proxy parties from contesting but also to save a lot of national wealth,” he said.

Leader of the House Susil Premajayantha responding to Alahapperuma said, however, that it would not be possible to pass the proposed amendment in time for the 2024 presidential election.

“The election commission made this proposal some time ago. But we know that to gazette a bill, we need to first draft the bill, the cabinet has to decide on it, send it back to the Legal Draftsman, and receive clearance from the Attorney General. So there is no time to bring this amendment for the upcoming presidential election. You can propose it at the next one,” he said. (Colombo/Jul24/2024)

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Sri Lanka deaf driver license project to be expanded islandwide

ECONOMYNEXT – A pilot project that allowed hearing-impaired persons to obtain light-vehicle driving licenses has been successful and will be rolled out island-wide, Sri Lanka’s Motor Traffic Department said.

The project was implemented in the Gampaha District initially where 50 licenses were provided to drivers who qualified.

The project was expanded to the Kurunegala District, where 150 drivers obtained licences. The drivers were given a probation period.

“Actually, this was a very successful project. It has been almost a year and we haven’t received a single complaint yet,” Motor Traffic Department Commissioner – Driving Licence Wasantha Ariyarathna told reporters on Wednesday.

“We plan to roll it out to all 25 districts islandwide.”

The issuance of driver’s licenses to hearing impaired persons will be done on a bi-annual renewal basis.

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Sri Lanka election commission to announce poll date before weekend

File photo of polling booth

ECONOMYNEXT — Sri Lanka’s Election Commission will announce the date of the election before the end of this week, commission chairman R M L Ratnayake told a private news network.

Ratnayake told the privately owned NewsFirst Wednesday July 24 morning that the gazette notification in this regard would be published before the weekend.

“As I stated before, we will announce the date before the end of this week. There is no backtracking at all. We have selected a date that is nearest and most suitable after September 17 for the election,” he said.

Ratnayake told the media at a press conference on July 16 that the commission will publish the notice announcing nomination and election dates before the end of July.

“Our first task is to publish the notice on the election. From the day the notice is published, nominations have to be accepted between 16 and 21 days. The election should be held within four to six weeks of from the day of accepting nominations,” said Ratnayake.

“The candidates must have enough time to do their campaigns after handing over nominations. Time is also needed to cast postal votes and carry out other duties. The election date should also be convenient for the voters. For the acceptance of nominations, we have to consider cultural factors unique to a country like Sri Lanka. Some people consider things like the Rahu period. So we have to find a date that is suitable for everyone,” he said.

Ratnayake said the election commission intends to issue the notice before the end of July.

“This notice will contain the nominations date and the election date. We plan to then hold the election on the most suitable day after September 17.

“Some people had suggested that we have delayed this to end July to the benefit of one party or another. I want to point out that we can delay we can extend it to August 20 if needed,” he said. (Colombo/Jul24/2024)

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