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Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan rupee hits record low on importer dollar demand


COLOMBO: Sri Lankan rupee hit an all-time low on Tuesday, as dollar demand from importers outpaced selling of the U.S. currency by exporters, dealers said. The rupee hit a record low of 157.35 against the dollar intraday, weakening further from its previous low of 156.90 hit on Monday. “Exporters are there, but the import demand is severe. The demand is ... Read More »

Sri Lanka Maha 2018 rice production rebounds 62-pct


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s rough rice production in the main Maha cultivation season has been upped to 2.4 million metric tonnes, rebounding 62 percent from the drought stricken season last year, though output will be 14 percent below normal. The forecast by Sri Lanka’s Department of Agriculture is based on 643,161 hectares of paddy land sown up to February 2018, up ... Read More »

Sri Lankan couple smuggling Rs. 9 mn worth gold to India nabbed at airport


COLOMBO: A couple of Sri Lankan couple, who attempted to smuggle out a stock of gold worth over Rs 9.1 million to Mumbai, was arrested early this morning by the Customs officers at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA). The Customs says the value of the stock of gold is around Rs. 91,183,850. The business couple, residents of Maradana, had arrived ... Read More »

Sri Lanka stocks end 0.19-pct higher


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka stocks closed 0.19 percent higher on Friday with markets open for half a day in lieu of the Sinhala and Tamil New Year falling last Saturday, while the rupee weakened against the US dollar, brokers and dealers said. The rupee weakened to 156.40/48 rupees against the US dollar in the spot market on importer demand, dealers said. ... Read More »

Sri Lanka gold jewellery price up after tax hike


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s 24-carat gold price had risen to 62,000 rupees for an 8.00 gram sovereign after a 15 percent tax hike by the government, jewellers in Colombo said. Before the New Year, gold was trading around 53,000 to 54,000 rupees for 8.00 grams. Jewellery grade 22 carat gold was quoted around 59,000 – 60,000 rupees a sovereign, up from ... Read More »

Sri Lanka slaps new tax on gold to curb imports


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka on Wednesday slapped a 15% tax on gold to curb surging imports that have impacted the trade deficit and put pressure on the exchange rate, officials said. The finance ministry said the tax was reintroduced after a five-year hiatus as authorities detected a rapid spike in imports in recent months. “We believe that a lot of duty ... Read More »

World Bank projects positive growth for Sri Lanka


COLOMBO:  Sri Lanka’s economy will rebound in 2018 with annual growth averaging 4.5 percent in the medium term, according to a World Bank report released Tuesday. In its latest biannual report titled “South Asia Economic Focus Spring 2018,” the World Bank said the economic outlook in the island country remained favorable, provided the government was committed to the reform agenda ... Read More »

Sri Lanka economy to rebound delaying reforms pose risks


COLOMBO: The World Bank says Sri Lanka’s economy will rebound in 2018 with annual growth averaging 4.5 percent in the medium term, driven by private consumption and investment but warned against delaying reforms. Sri Lanka’s economy grew 3.1 percent in 2017, a 16-year low, on adverse weather and political uncertainty. “A further slowdown in reform implementation, in a challenging political ... Read More »

Sri Lanka forex reserves drop 7.7-pct in March


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s official forex reserves dropped 613 million US dollars to 7.309 million dollars in March 2018 from a month earlier, official data showed. Sri Lanka’s official forex reserves are made up of both central bank’s own reserves collected by mopping up excess liquidity and finance ministry reserves held as dollars. In March the central bank bought 98.50 million ... Read More »

Sri Lanka’s CEB shuts coal plant over emission concerns


COLOMBO: State-run Ceylon Electricity Board has shut down one of three coal plants in Sri Lanka’s North West coast after an environmental agency rapped it for missing environmental standards. The CEB shut down the plant on April 11 to fix malfunctioning equipment that scrubs particles and harmful gases. The Provincial Environmental Authority ordered an immediate shut down of the plant ... Read More »

Sri Lanka’s CPC losse Rs9.8bn on fuel sales in two months


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corporation has lost 9,886 million rupees in the first two months of 2018, selling petrol, diesel and kerosene, as crude prices spiked, cabinet spokesman minister Rajitha Senaratne said. “We are watching international prices,” he told reporters. “We want to see whether the prices come down.” Sri Lanka was expected to implement a price formula ... Read More »

Sri Lanka to lose half a million tax payers from new law


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka will lose 500,000 employed who were pay as you earn (PAYE) tax payers under a new law that came into effect in on April 01, the finance ministry said. The current administration lifted a tax free slab to 1.2 million rupees a year but removed 50,000 allowance for transport and also telephone allowances. The finance ministry said ... Read More »

Sri Lanka trade deficit widens 12 percent in January 2018 despite double-digit growth in exports


COLOMBO: Despite a double-digit growth in exports, Sri Lanka’s trade deficit widened to exceed US$ 1 billion mark in January 2018 for the second consecutive month due to significant level of imports offsetting the increase in export earnings, according to the Central Bank data released in its External Sector Performance Review for the month. The external sector demonstrated an improvement ... Read More »

Sri Lanka trade deficit expands over USD1bn in January


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s trade deficit has expanded in January surpassing 1 billion US dollars for the second consecutive month due to significant level of imports offsetting the increase in export earnings. While earnings from merchandise exports increased, expenditure on imports also increased significantly outweighing the performance in export earnings during the month. Import expenditure surpassed the 2 billion dollar mark ... Read More »

Sri Lankan rupee firms on exporter dollar conversions


COLOMBO: The Sri Lankan rupee ended stronger on Friday on exporter dollar conversions, inward remittances and foreign buying of government securities, as Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe surviving a no-confidence motion earlier this week boosted sentiment, dealers said. Wickremesinghe won a no-confidence vote in parliament late on Wednesday as a majority of legislators voted to support his coalition government. Sri Lanka’s ... Read More »

Sri Lanka’s central bank to further narrow policy corridor


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka will narrow its policy corridor further giving tighter control over short term rates to the rate to the Central Bank to control benchmark interest rates, rate setting monetary board, Deputy Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe said. “When we move into an inflation targeting regime we would like to have a narrower band to manage interest rates,” Weerasinghe said. “So ... Read More »

Sri Lanka reduces lending rate to boost economic growth


COLOMBO: The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has decided to reduce the lending interest rate by 25 basis points with immediate effect. The Bank said considering the favorable developments in inflation and inflation outlook as well as lower than expected real GDP growth that further widened the prevailing gap between actual and potential GDP growth, the Monetary Board, at ... Read More »

Sri Lanka expects Rs60bn extra revenue from new tax law


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka’s government expects to raise Rs60 billion a year in additional tax revenue with the implementation of the new tax law, Finance Ministry Deputy Secretary S.R. Attygalle said. This year the government expects to get Rs30 billion more from taxes under the new Inland Revenue Act which came into effect 1 April 2018. That’s because the additional revenue ... Read More »

Sri Lanka higher PAYE tax rates come into effect


COLOMBO: A new income tax which requires workers to pay a higher level of taxes on employment income, with an exemption of transport allowances remained and the maximum rate boosted to 24 percent from the current 16 percent has come into effect from April 01. Under the old rates a person earning 100,000 rupees and a transport allowance of 50,000 ... Read More »

Kiwi companies to explore biz opportunities in Sri Lanka


COLOMBO: Sri Lanka is an increasingly important partner for New Zealand in South Asia, evidenced by the recent visits from New Zealand businesses and the New Zealand High Commission scheduled to open in Colombo next year. “With one of the highest per capita incomes in South Asia and a growing urban population, Sri Lanka’s demand for quality manufactured goods and ... Read More »