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Friday July 12th, 2024

Sri Lanka tea plantation female workers overlooked for promotions: Minister

Workers in the tea plantations have their meal amidst the tea bushes.

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s female tea pluckers do not get promoted as male tea pluckers do, Minister of Estate Infrastructure Jeevan Thondaman said.

“I know educated women who are plucking tea because they are not getting into management, and I know less than qualified men who are in management positions. Why? Because they know how to order people around,” Thondaman told EconomyNext.

A study done by Verite Research in 2022 shows that the estate sector’s economically active population is 404,002 out of which 167,156 are women.

However, there is a difference in the work that men and women do while being paid the same wage.

“The men do sundry work and the women pluck tea so it’s not that men get paid more it’s that men do a different set of work. The gender inequality is that women have to pluck tea for let’s say 10 hours across three sittings, but there are men who get appointed as the watcher, the cook in the bungalow, or the manager will have some guys to take his child to school and all of that,” Thondaman said.

“The management believes that women are meant to pluck tea and are not into management.”

In addition to being rejected for management positions, female tea pluckers also lack bathroom facilities, and are being forced to remove their pottus, the minister said.

“With Kelani Valley they did not inform the workers that they could have an alternative. It was either you remove it or we will remove you,” Thondaman said.

Kelani Valley Plantations management denied the allegations.

“We cannot forcibly remove pottus, however we do not allow the sticker pottu according to ISO regulations,” CEO of Kelani Valley Plantations, Roshan Rajadurai said. “It is not just Kelani Valley; no plantation company will allow it. He is just saying this to justify his insane behaviour.” (Colombo/Jun13/2024)

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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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