An Echelon Media Company
Thursday May 23rd, 2024

Sri Lanka stocks jump to over 3-month high on IMF deal hope after Chinese assurance 

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s share jumped to more than three-month high on Monday (23), on overall positive sentiment following assurances from India and China on debt restructuring, boosting overall market sentiment, dealers said.

The main All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed at 3.13 percent or 272.64 points higher at 8,990.94, its highest close since October 14, last year.

Shares had seen a broad base pick up after assurances from India and China over the ending of the week, prompting the market to move on green, an analyst said.

Mixtures of the possible IMF loan coming sooner, positive outlooks on debt restructuring, speculations on commercial banks not being extended towards domestic debt restructuring have driven the market upwards, he said.

Over the weekend, Beijing had given Sri Lanka a positive response over the request for debt re-structuring the Exim Bank of China has indicated that they are willing to support Sri Lanka’s debt re-structuring efforts, State Finance Minister Shehan Semasinghe said.

The Indian government last week informed the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on January (19), that it strongly supports Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring efforts in the latter’s bid to secure a 2.9 billion dollar extended fund facility (EFF).

Banking counters have significantly moved up due to speculations that domestic debt restructuring may not be extended to commercial banks, the analyst said.

Sri Lanka is expecting to get top executive board approval from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a 2.9 billion dollar loan, officials say, and that is expected to improve the country’s rating before the island nation seeking borrowing from global capital markets.

The most liquid index S&P SL20 closed higher at 3.48 percent or 94.72 points at 2,818.94.

First quarter of 2023 is expected to be negative with the taxations going in to effect from January 1 amid electricity tariff hike, which has got Cabinet approval and Sri Lanka’s Public Utilities Commission has taken a U Turn on the retrospective tariff hike.

The second quarter of 2023 is expected to be more positive with the anticipation of IMF getting through and with the interest rates expected to ease as the taxes starts to generate funds, dealers say.

Sri Lanka is expecting a further contraction in the economy after a negative growth in 2022, Cabinet Spokesperson Bandula Gunawardena said at the Weekly Cabinet Press Briefing.

The market witnessed a turnover of 2 billion rupees, higher than this month’s daily average of 1.9 billion rupees. However, it is also comparatively lower than 2022 daily average turnover of 2.9 billion rupees.

Top gainers at market close were Richard Pieris, Commercial Bank, Sampath Bank and LOLC. (Colombo/Jan23/2022)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sri Lanka to speed up and expand Bingiriya export zone

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is expanding an export processing zone in Bingiriya in Kurunegala and plans to link the area with Puttalam with roads and other infrastructure, Minister Bandula Gunawardana said.

A task force of ministerial secretaries will be appointed to carry out the tasks speedily, following a cabinet paper submitted by President Ranil Wickremesinghe said.

The Bingiriya zone already has 157 acres and another 282 acres is being developed by the Board of Investment, he said.

Steps would also be taken to acquire 666 acres.

There was no information whose lands would be acquired. (Colombo/May23/2024)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka has power breakdowns amidst extreme weather

ECONOMYNEXT – The state-owned power utility, the Ceylon Electricity Board has reported over 36,900 breakdowns resulting in power interruptions to more than 300,000 consumers in the last three days due to inclement weather in the island, the power minister said.

“Additional service staff has been assigned to attend the breakdowns and the CEB management & service staff are working 24 hours to restore power to the affected consumers,” Minister of Power and Energy, Kanchana Wijesekera said on social media platform X (twitter).

Wijesekera said consumers could report power interruptions through the CEB hotline 1987, via SMS to 1987 with BD and the electricity consumer number to follow, or use the CEB Care app, or through http://cebcare.ceb.lk.

The South-East monsoon has seen floods, landslides and strong winds do damage to the utility provider’s infrastructure in the last week. (Colombo/May23?2024)

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka President calls for unity, sacrificing for a better tomorrow on Vesak day

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremesinghe has recalled a sermon from the Buddha about sacrificing for a better tomorrow, and called for unity to heal and rebuild the country, as Buddhists celebrate Vesak.

Buddhists celebrate Vesak as commemorating the birth, enlightenment and passing away of the Buddha.

“At this challenging moment, we as a nation should cultivate the same great zeal for enlightenment that Buddha exemplified, inspired by his sermon, “Maththasukha parichchaga- passé che vipulan sukhan” – to sacrifice today for a better tomorrow,” President Wickremesinghe said in his Vesak day message.

“We must remember the advice of Lord Buddha, “Sabbattha Sammanaso,” to treat everyone equally and ensure we put it into practice as a country. This is the greatest offering we can present to the Buddha on this Vesak day.

“Regardless of race, religion, caste, or political affiliation, we must all unite to heal and rebuild our country. ”

The full statement is reproduced below:

The Vesak festival is a profoundly sacred day for Buddhists worldwide, commemorating the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment, and passing. Buddhists in Sri Lanka, along with their brethren around the globe, celebrate Vesak with deep devotion. They spend this period engaging in religious observances and venerating the Buddha with fervent devotion.

At this challenging moment, we as a nation should cultivate the same great zeal for enlightenment that Buddha exemplified, inspired by his sermon, “Maththasukha parichchaga- passé che vipulan sukhan” – to sacrifice today for a better tomorrow.

We must remember the advice of Lord Buddha, “Sabbattha Sammanaso,” to treat everyone equally and ensure we put it into practice as a country. This is the greatest offering we can present to the Buddha on this Vesak day. Regardless of race, religion, caste, or political affiliation, we must all unite to heal and rebuild our country. The principles of Lichchavi Raja Dharmaya will guide us in this endeavour.

Let us keep in mind that the primary aim of the Vesak festival is to foster spiritual growth and character development in a world rapidly advancing physically. I wish everyone a blessed Vesak festival.

Continue Reading