All-Party Government will strengthen parliamentary democracy – Dr. Susil Premajayantha – By UDITHA KUMARASINGHE Source : sundayobserver Leader of the House and Education Minister Dr. Susil Premajayantha said that forming an All-Party Government would pave the way to strengthen parliamentary democracy. The Minister in an interview with the Sunday Observer said at present the whole world is looking at us so that it would be a very good message for the international community and the financial institutions such as World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Asian Development Bank and donor countries to reconsider their stance towards Sri Lanka. He said the ulterior motive of certain groups is to capture power outside the Constitution. However, most of the people who participated in those protests are not in that line. First we should restore the law and order in the country and guarantee the supply of essential items such as foods and implement a ...

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ADB grants US$ 50 mn for import of chemical fertilizers-by Indika Polkotuwa Minister Roshan Ranasinghe visited the Sri Dalada Maligawa and met the Malwatta and Asgiriya Anunayaka Theras recently. Source:Dailynews Irrigation, Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Roshan Ranasinghe said that the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a grant of US$ 50 million for the importation of chemical fertilizers for the forthcoming Maha season. The necessary Cabinet approval will be obtained this week, the Minister said. Minister Ranasinghe was speaking after visiting the Sri Dalada Maligawa and meeting the Malwatta and Asgiriya Anunayaka Theras recently. The Minister said that with the introduction of chemical fertilizers required for the Maha season, it will be possible to increase the production and provide the required amount of rice to the people in the future. ...

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China becomes wild card in Sri Lanka’s debt crisis – by BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI China says its initiative to build ports and other infrastructure across Asia and Africa, paid for with Chinese loans, will boost trade Source:abcnews.go.com COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — China says its initiative to build ports and other infrastructure across Asia and Africa, paid for with Chinese loans, will boost trade. But in a cautionary tale for borrowers, Sri Lanka’s multibillion-dollar debt to Beijing threatens to hinder efforts to resolve a financial crisis so severe that the Indian Ocean nation cannot import food or gasoline. Sri Lanka’s struggle is extreme, but it reflects conditions across dozens of countries from South Pacific islands through some of the poorest in Asia and Africa that have signed onto Chinese President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative. The total debt of poor countries is rising, raising risks others might run into trouble. Sri Lanka’s 22 ...

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Tourism earnings hit $ 500 m target for 2021 By Charumini de Silva Source:ft.lk Industry aims to springboard from recovery to resilience from 2022 onwards Govt. all set to declare 2022 as ‘Visit Sri Lanka Year’ along with Global Communication Campaign Tourism Ministry to set up Special Secretariat to coordinate 5-year GCC activities National Tourism Policy for Sri Lanka to be finalised and implemented from this month The COVID-hit tourism industry has managed to rebound with earnings of over $ 500 million in 2021. “Tourism holds a greater significance in the services sector and has been a driver of growth for the economy. The industry was the most vulnerable to COVID-pandemic, but it has proven again its resilience with remarkable resurgence. The year ended with 194,495 tourists, with earnings surpassing the target of $ 500 million,” Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) Director-General Dhammika Wijayasingha told the Daily FT. As ...

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Nearly 5,000 delegates to arrive-by Dilshan Tharaka Source:Dailynews The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) of the 55th Annual Conference of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) which is scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka next year under the theme “Positioning a Climate Change-Adapted Green Economy for the Post-COVID -19 World”, was signed at the Finance Ministry by Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa. This conference is scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka from May 2 to 5, next year (2022). It was signed on behalf of the Asian Development Bank by the Director General of its South Asian Department, Kenchi Yokoyana while Finance Ministry Secretary R. Artigala signed the MoU on behalf of the Government. ...

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A reset of economic fundamentals in Sri Lanka; Is IMF the only hope? By Raj Gonsalkorale Sri Lanka is at the precipice of an economic disaster. The country’s foreign debt is suffocating the country, it is its biggest immediate problem, and the problem for the foreseeable future unless urgent and drastic action is taken, now. The crisis arises due to several factors, the primary factor being the high component of market borrowings in the form of International Sovereign Bonds (ISBs) in the country’s foreign debt portfolio. ISBs account for 47% of the debt. The following Central Bank chart shows this ISBs are short term loans attracting high interest rates (around 6%) with no grace periods while loans from international institutions such as the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, IMF, attract low interests and long term repayment terms including grace periods. ISBs are usually not conditional while others like WB, ADB, ...

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Sri Lanka foreign currency debt obligations due between now and 2026 amount to about US$ 29bn Source:Island External liquidity pressures have eased somewhat in recent months Planned IMF SDR allocation would also add US$780 million to reserves Authorities have yet to specify foreign-currency debt-servicing plans for the medium term Sri Lanka’s ‘CCC’ rating reflects a challenging foreign-currency sovereign external debt repayment burden over the medium term, low foreign-exchange reserves and high and rising government debt that give rise to sustainability risks, Fitch Ratings said on Monday. External liquidity pressures have eased somewhat in recent months following bilateral loan disbursements, and our expectation of a forthcoming IMF special drawing rights (SDR) allocation. Nevertheless, Sri Lanka’s medium-term debt service challenges are substantial and pose risks to the sovereign’s debt repayment capacity, in Fitch’s view. A total of about USD 29 billion in foreign-currency debt obligations are due between now and 2026, against ...

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Sri Lanka policy incoherence hurting rating, potential lenders: Fitch Monday May 18, 2020 10:38:40 ECONOMYNEXT – The lack of a coherent policy framework is hurting the sovereign rating and also potential lenders who may want to finance the country, an analyst at Fitch Ratings which downgraded the country to a ‘B-‘ a notch above CCC has said. The outlook is also negative at the lower level. Sri Lanka has about 4 to 4.5 billion US dollars in foreign loans to pay in the next few years and this year about 3.2 billion US dollars remain to be paid. ...

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