TODAY'S NEWS UPDATES

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April 2018

Ranil scuttles no-faith bid

The no-confidence motion against Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, for his alleged involvement in treasury bond scams and failure to act promptly to contain ethnic violence in Ampara and Kandy, was defeated in Parliament yesterday with a majority of 46 votes.

 

PM to meet Prez today

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told the media last night that he would meet President Maithripala Sirisena today. "I will tell him that we must protect the January 08 victory and we must safeguard the principles that we were elected on."

 

CBSL announces first policy rate cut since April 2015

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka was seen decreasing its Standing Lending Facility Rate (SLFR) by 25 basis points at its second monetary policy announcement for the year 2018 held yesterday (4 April), signalling its first policy easing cycle since April 2015. The new Standing Deposit Facility Rate (SDFR) and Standing Lending Facility Rate (SLFR) will be at 7.25% and 8.50% respectively narrowing the corridor gap to 1.25% against 1.50%.

 

CBSL Governor says time is right for fuel pricing formula

It is time to introduce a fuel pricing formula as all other indicators relating to inflation are favourable, Central Bank Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy said yesterday.

 

Govt. to obtain World Bank, EU assistance to boost public sector efficiency

The Government plans to obtain financial assistance from world lenders to strengthen the state institutions dealing with state fiscal management.

 

Envoy says Indian ‘aid is not to raid or invade’

India is always available to collaborate with Sri Lanka, according to the pace Sri Lanka is comfortable with, said India’s top diplomat in Sri Lanka this week, in a diplomatic speech which nevertheless alluded to regional geopolitics.

 

Will new entrants fire up SL’s modern retail market?

Competition in Sri Lanka’s supermarket landscape is set to intensify with the entrance of at least a couple of international retail giants through well-established local partners in the near future, Mirror Business learns. 

 

President emphasises on increasing timber imports to preserve forests

President Maithripala Sirisena says it is necessary to increase the importation of timber to meet the country’s needs in order to aid increasing the forest density of the country while protecting the forest resources.

 

CB signals wary policy loosening 

The Central Bank yesterday (4 April) cut the policy ceiling rate by 25 basis points to 8.50%, signalling cautious relaxation of monetary policy for the first time in two years, predicated on falling inflation and growth. 

 

Global central banks can adopt negative rates as conventional tool

BEIJING/HONG KONG (Reuters): Global central banks should adopt deeply negative interest rate policy during a ‘deflationary’ recession and use it as a conventional monetary tool to revitalise growth, a senior Chinese central bank official wrote in a working paper.

 

Rs. 1 billion turnover despite political uncertainty

The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) recorded Rs. 1.212 billion turnover despite both indices indicating mixed reactions. The All Share Price Index went down by 13.92 while S and P SL20 moved up 8.38 points. Due to political uncertainty overall market was down despite S and P SL20 moving up slightly.

 

February worker remittances fall amid expanding trade deficit

The worker remittances to Sri Lanka fell in February as the receipts in the first two months from export of labour languished amid the country facing an uphill task of containing an ever expanding trade deficit and a mounting foreign debt load. 

 

FinMin puts bunching debt figure at US $ 15bn between 2019 and 2022

The headroom to tackle Sri Lanka’s worsening public debt situation appears to be disappearing as the government estimates a whopping US $ 15 billion in foreign debt service payment during the four years from 2019 to 2022.

 

Colombo Bourse fall to 1-week low as political woes weigh

Reuters: Sri Lankan shares fell yesterday (4 April) to their lowest in one week as political uncertainty hurt sentiment ahead of a no-confidence vote against Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, brokers said. The Prime Minister faces the vote at around 1600 GMT that could go down to the wire and lead to political instability in the island nation, even if the Government manages to scrape a win.

 

Rupee slips on dollar demand linked to equity outflows

Reuters: The Sri Lankan rupee closed weaker on Wednesday (4 April), for a second straight session, as bank dollar buying to facilitate equity related outflows surpassed exporter dollar sales and inward remittances, dealers said.

 

Sri Lanka 12-month Treasuries yield reaches 9.91-pct

The yield on Sri Lanka’s 12-month Treasury Bills edged up further at an auction Wednesday, rising 22 basis points to 9.91% with bids for other tenors rejected, the central bank’s public debt department said.

 

Transport Minister did nothing for the Bus Industry for three years: LPBOA

Bus owners claim that they are inconvenienced due to the inefficiency of Minister of Transport Nimal Siripala de Siva. The Chairman of the Lanka Private Bus Owners Association, Gemunu Wijerathna said that the private bus industry has been moving towards deterioration due to the ongoing political crisis in the Government and the Ministry.

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