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Thursday June 20th, 2024

Two more die in Sri Lanka fuel queues amid shortage

ECONOMYNEXT – Two Sri Lankans died in fuel queues over the weekend, police media said on Monday (11), bringing the death toll in fuel queues to seven since March 31.

Both death had occurred due to heart attack after being waiting in the queues for a long time.

“The two deaths earlier were due to heart attacks. They were on medications,” Police Spokesman Nihal Thalduwa told Economy Next.

A 47-year old private bus driver from Gonawila died on Saturday (09) while waiting in the fuel queue. Eyewitnesses had said that the man collapsed on the street.

The second death took place on Sunday (10) morning and a 52-year old tourist guide of Kochchikade died. Police media stated that the man had filled his tank and gone about 10 meters before he was found dead in his vehicle.

Of the previous five deaths, four were of senior citizens who died of natural causes, the fifth, a 29-year old man was stabbed to death following an argument while waiting in a fuel queue.

People standing in fuel queues, cans in hand, has been a common sight in recent weeks as Sri Lanka’s fuel shortages worsen amid a worsening forex crisis.

People have been seen collecting extra fuel in fear of future shortages.

Authorities say panic buying is making the problem worse when fuel is available and a continuous supply is to be ensured through a 500 million US dollar Indian credit line.

Severe shortage of foreign currency has reduced the fuel import and that in fact had led to shortage and extended power cuts as high as 13 hours in a day.

Sri Lanka is facing multiple crisis simultaneously – power cuts, shortages of essentials, and a sharp depreciation of the rupee following the float.

Thousands of Sri Lankans have taken to the streets to protest the Government’s mishandling of the economy, organized via social media. Hundreds of protesters have occupied a protesting site next to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s office for the third day on Monday. (Colombo/April 11/2022)

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Sri Lanka rupee closes stronger at 305.10/30 to US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee closed stronger ahead of the long weekend at 305.10/30 to the US dollar on Thursday, up from 305.40/55 to the US dollar Wednesday, dealers said, while some bond yields edged up.

A bond maturing on 15.12.2026 closed at 10.45/80 percent, up from 10.35/75 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2028 closed at 11.20/45 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.09.2029 closed at 12.00/15 percent, up from 11.95/12.35 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.12.2031 closed at 12.05/25 percent.

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Sri Lanka stocks close up, JKH trade pushes turnover

ECONOMYNEXT – The Colombo Stock Exchange closed up on Thursday, data on its site showed.

The broader All Share Index closed up 0.19 percent, or 23.11 points, at 12,249; while the more liquid S&P SL20 Index closed up 0.15 percent, or 5.33 points, at 3,610.

Turnover was 2 billion. Nearly half of this (Rs980mn) came from a crossing on John Keells Holdings Plc. The share closed down at 202.00.

“There were several crossings today which pushed turnover,” market participants said.

“Institutions and high net-worth activity drove the market, while the retail investors we feel are still about uncertain and adopting a wait-and-see approach.”

Melstacorp Plc was among the companies that saw active volumes (Rs194mn) in the day. The share closed up at 87.10.

Top contributors to the index included TeeJay Lanka Plc (up at 41.70), Sampath Bank Plc (up at 79.50), Hatton National Bank Plc (down at 201.00). Hayleys Plc (up at 105.00) and its subsidiary Hayleys Fabric Plc (up at 46.60) were also positive contributors. (Colombo/Jun20/2024)

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Sri Lanka, India launch maritime rescue coordination centre

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s president Ranil Wickremesinghe and visiting Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar marked the formal commissioning of a Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre in the island nation on Thursday.

The MRCC was constructed with a 6 million dollar grant from India.

It includes a centre at Navy headquarters in Colombo, a sub-centre in Hambantota and unmanned installations at Galle, Arugambay, Batticaloa, Trincomalee, Kallarawa, Point Pedro and Mollikulam.

Wickremesinghe and Jaishankar also launched, virtually, 106 houses in Kandy, Nuwara Eliya and Matale under the Indian Housing Project. 24 houses in each model village were handed over.

Jaishankar called on President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the President’s House earlier in the day for a one-on-one meeting, the president’s media division said.

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Indian FM Jaishankar in Sri Lanka to discuss partnerships amid project delays, ahead of polls

Jaishankar’s one-day official visit to Colombo was to discuss “wide-ranging issues of the partnership”, India said, amid delays of some key Indian projects ahead of a presidential poll in Sri Lanka. (Colombo/Jun20/204)

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