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Saturday March 2nd, 2024

Sri Lanka tea prices fall at weekly auction

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s High, Medium and Low Growns prices were down at an auction on April 19, following the New Year holidays, data showed.

Total auction volume was 5.3 million kilograms and there was good general demand, Forbes and Walker tea brokers said in a report.

The weekly sale average fell by 2.71 rupees to 159.69.40 rupees from 1262.40 rupees, according to data.

High Growns

The High Grown sale average was down by 39.76 rupees to 1,313 from 1,340.35 rupees, Ceylon Tea Brokers said.

Ex-Estate offerings totalled 0.781 million kilos.

Overall quality of teas on offer were barely maintained with a limited availability of better liquoring teas, Forbes and Walker said.

BOP and BOPF prices fell by 100 rupees and the price of PF1 fell by 50 rupees per kilo.

Nuwara Eliya’s were barely steady. Uda Pussellawa’s fell up to 100 rupees per kilo. Uva’s were firm to dearer by 50 rupees per kilo.

Low Growns

Price of OP1 went down by 50 rupees while BOP 1 gained by 40 rupees.

All the other prices remained stable.

Low Growns comprised 2.3 million kilos. Leafy, Semi Leafy and Tippy catalogues met with fair demand.

However, the average price of Low Growns grew 11.21 rupees to 1,309.91 rupees.

Select best teas in PEKOE/PEKOE1 together with full range of bold PEK’s were firm to lower. Cleaner below best and the rest were irregular.

FBOP/FBOP1 select best and best were firm on last, others were easier.

In BOP the prices were steady, lower market.

BOPF All-round irregular.

Medium Growns

The Medium Growns sale average fell 17.18 rupees to 1,085.04 rupees last week.

FBOPF and PEK1 fell 100 rupees per kilo and FBOPF1 fell 150 rupees per kilo.

High & Medium Grown CTC teas – Improved demand for BP1’s though hardly any offerings, Forbes and Walker said.

BOP1 – Select best dearer by 100 per kilo whilst best appreciated by 50 rupees per kilo. Below best and others held firm.

OP1 – Best increased by 50 rupees per kilo whilst others were firm. (Colombo/April 23/2023)

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Sri Lanka eyes SOE law by May 2024 for better governance

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is planning to pass a Public Commercial Business (PCB) Act improve governance of state-owned enterprise by May 2024 as part of an anti-corruption efforts following an International Monetary Fund assessment.

Sri Lanka’s state enterprises have been used by politicians to give ‘jobs of the boys’, appropriate vehicles for personal use, fill board of directors and key positions with henchmen and relatives, according to critics.

Meanwhile macro-economists working for the state also used them to give off-budget subsides or made energy utilities in particular borrow through supplier’s credits and state banks after forex shortages are triggered through inflationary rate cuts.

The government has taken billons of dollars of loans given to Ceylon Petroleum Corporation from state banks.

There have also been high profile procurement scandals connected to SOEs.

An SOE Reform Policy was approved by Sri Lanka’s cabinet of ministers in May 2023.

The Public Commercial Business (PCB) Act has now been drafted.

A holding company to own the SOEs will be incorporated and an Advisory Committee and Board of Directors will be appointed after the PCB law is approved, the statement said. (Colombo/Mar01/2024)

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Sri Lanka rupee closes at 308.80/90 to the US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed at 308.80/90 to the US dollar Friday, from 309.50/70 on Thursday, dealers said.

Bond yields were broadly steady.

A bond maturing on 01.02.2026 closed at 10.65/75 percent up from 10.50/70 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2027 closed at 11.90/12.05 percent from 11.90/12.10 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2028 closed at 12.15/35 percent down from 12.20/25 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.07.2029 closed at 12.25/40 percent up from 12.30/45 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.05.2030 closed at 12.30/45 percent down from 12.35/50 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2032 closed at 12.50/13.00 percent from 12.55/13.00 percent. (Colombo/Mar1/2024)

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Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.37-pct, Expo to de-list

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange closed up 0.37 percent on Friday, and SG Holdings, the parent company of Expolanka Holdings Plc, said it was taking the company private.

Expolanka is the largest listed company on the Colombo Stock Exchange.

“Expolanka Holdings PLC has, at the Board Meeting held on 1st March 2024, considered a request from its principal shareholder and resolved to initiate the de-listing of the Company’s shares from the Official List of the Colombo Stock Exchange subject to obtaining necessary shareholder approval and regulatory approvals,” the company said in a stock exchange filing.

As per arrangements with SG Holdings Global Pte Ltd, the Company’s majority shareholder, it will purchase its shares from shareholders who may wish to divest their shareholding in the Company at a purchase price of Rs 185.00 per share. The share closed up at 150.50.

The broader All Share Index closed up 0.37 percent, or 39.47 points, at 10,691; while the S&P SL20 Index closed down 0.64 percent, or 19.59 points, at 3,037.

Turnover stayed above the 1 billion mark for the sixth consecutive day, registering 1.4 billion.

Crossings in Melstarcorp Plc (135mn) up at 89.50, Hatton National Bank Plc (64mn) up at 158.00, Hemas Holdings Plc (53mn) up at 75.00 and Central Finance Company Plc (26mn) up at 103.50, added significantly to the day’s turnover.

“The upward trend is continuing, with more retail buying also coming in, the number of trades was more than 10,000 today,” a market participant said. “Investors are looking for undervalued stocks and buying in quantities.” (Colombo/Mar1/2024).

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