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Wednesday February 1st, 2023

Sri Lanka turning ex-Voice of America relay station into COVID-19 hospital

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will turn the building of a former Voice of America relay station into a COVID-19 hospital, as part of efforts to accommodate an increase in patients, a high level task force that drive Coronavirus control activities in the country said.

Sri Lanka has designated 18 hospitals to accept COVID-19 patients, but most of the confirmed patients are treated at the main infectious disease hospital in Colombo.

Mulleriyawa hospital, which is close to the IDH has also been turned into a COVID-19 treatment centre.

Sri Lanka is turning decommissioned Voice of America facilities into a COVID-19 treatment centre with the help of the military, a statement from the anti-COVID-19 task force quoted, Director General of Health Service Anil Jasinghe as saying.

The Voice of America relay station in Iranawila was built under heavy opposition from the Catholic Church. The VOA paid rent for the land and handed over facilities free of charge to the government.

VOA also handed over its old transmitters in Ekala and the land to the government when the new relay stations was built.

Meanwhile expectant mothers who are suspected of having COVID-19 are treated at a ward in Neville Fernando hospital, under the direction of doctors at Castle Street Hospital for women.

A 30-bed intensive care unit was being readied at the Kothelawala Defence University in Werahera.

Sri Lanka has only about 600 ICU beds with ventilators which are needed to treat older patients who get complications.

A small proportion of patients get severe pneumonia like condition requiring ventilator support to keep the patient alive long enough to fight off the virus without having respiratory failure.

Most of the patients die due to the lack of ventilators to keep them alive long enough.

Sri Lanka has about 600 ICU beds with ventilators Sri Lanka’s Government Medical Officers Association ha said. Jasinghe has said that broken ventilators are now being fixed.

China first notice the disease when patients with a pneumonia like condition began turning up at Wuhan in December. Since only a tiny proportion gets such symptoms, already thousands more may have been infected by that time.

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Sri Lanka coconut prices ease at auction

ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka’s coconut auction prices fell in the last auction in January 2023, with average prices going down by 4.1 percent at an auction on January 26, data showed.

The average price for 1,000 nuts fell to 80.811.89 from 84,116.85 a week earlier at the weekly auction conducted by Sri Lanka’s Coconut Development Authority.

The highest price was 87,300 rupees for 1,000 nuts down from the previous week’s 90,200 rupees, while the lowest was 72,500 down from 73,000 rupees.

The auction offered 469,564 coconuts and 300,983 nuts were sold. (Colombo/ Feb 01/2023)

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Sri Lanka shares edge up at close

ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lanka’s shares edged up on Wednesday pushed as investors bought in to beaten down shares following the previous session’s drop, market analyst said.“

At this price level what we are seeing is a lot of confidence from the investors to collect when the prices drop. So, the market is not falling sharply,” a market analyst said.

Market had also seen buying in Expolanka shares on speculation that the parent company of SG Holdings was buying back into the shares.

All Share Price Index (ASPI) edged up by 0.96 percent or 84.96 points to 8,950.01.

The most liquid index S&P SL20 gained 1.27 percent or 35.02 points to 2,799.53.

Banking and Insurance counters had seen interest on the back of positive sentiments from the IMF.

The central bank has said it could cut interest rates in future when the the country sees fall in inflation, which has already started decelerating.

The market saw a turnover of 1.5 billion rupees today,lower than the month’s daily average of 1.8 billion rupees and nearly half of 2022 average turnover of 2.9 billion rupees.

The bourse saw a flow of net foreign inflow of 45 million rupees extending the net offshore buying to 1.9 billion so far this year.

Top gainers of the day were Commercial Bank, Expolanka, and Ceylinco Insurance. (Colombo/Feb01/2023)

 

 

 

 

 

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Sri Lanka bond yields down at close

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s bond yields were down at close following a bond auction on Wednesday, dealers said while a guidance peg for interbank transactions remained unchanged.

“The rates were steady at the auction,” a dealer said.

“This can be a signal to the market saying the rates will go down in the future.”

A bond maturing on 01.07.2025 closed at 32.40/60 percent, down from yesterday’s 32.60/85 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.05.2027 closed at 29.10/35 marginally down from yesterday’s 29.20/75 percent.

The Central Bank’s guidance peg for interbank US dollar transactions remained unchanged at 362.14 rupees against the US dollar.

Commercial banks offered dollars for telegraphic transfers at 371.38 rupees on Friday, data showed. (Colombo/Feb 01/2022)

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