Wednesday, May 31, 2023

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Sri Lanka Original Narrative Summary: 26/05

  1. President Ranil Wickremesinghe meets Japanese PM Fumio Kishida: expresses appreciation for the support by Japan to SL to recover from the economic crisis: also says SL has made progress on debt restructuring and should conclude discussions by November, the latest.
  2. President Ranil Wickremesinghe meets Japanese Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki: talks focus on Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring and implementation of the IMF program: President also meets Singapore Deputy PM Lawrence Wong and re-affirms commitment to implement the Singapore Free Trade Agreement.
  3. Economist Steve Hanke’s Annual Misery Index 2022 ranks SL as the 11th most miserable country in the world; the index provides rankings for 157 countries, based on year-end unemployment, inflation, and bank-lending rates, and the annual percentage change in real GDP per capita: Zimbabwe ranked as ‘most miserable’ while others include Venezuela, Syria, Lebanon, Sudan, Argentina, Yemen, Ukraine, Cuba, Turkey, Haiti, Angola, Tonga & Ghana:
    Switzerland emerges as ‘least miserable’.
  4. The remains of late businessman Dinesh Schaffter were exhumed under judicial supervision at the Borella Cemetery.
  5. President Ranil Wickremesinghe apologizes to the Japanese Govt for the “unilateral cancellation” of the Japanese Govt loan of USD 1.5 bn to construct the Light Rail Transit project in Colombo: says there’s a need for legislation to ensure that large-scale bilateral projects cannot be canceled without mutual agreement.
  6. CB Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe says youth must try to become entrepreneurs instead of going overseas looking for greener pastures: over the past year, thousands of enterprises have crashed and over half a million persons rendered unemployed after the Central Bank under Weerasinghe increased interest rates to astronomical heights.
  7. State Minister for Finance Shehan Semasinghe says Sri Lanka plans to lift import controls on 100 items that were banned during forex shortages in the past 2 years, out of 3,000 denoted by HS codes.
  8. “Save the Children” quoting World Bank data, says children in Sri Lanka require critical life-saving support: says half a million jobs have been lost and 2.7 million additional people have fallen into poverty: also says 38% of families with children are unable to meet their basic food and education needs.
  9. Sinopec Fuel denies claims that it has hired external agencies or 3rd parties to handle its fuel station operations or related business activities: clarifies it has no intention to transfer any right of the license of fuel station supply to any other entity.
  10. Sprint sensation Yupun Abeykoon clocks 10.01 seconds to finish 2nd in the 100m finals at the Savona International meet in Italy: Reece Prescod of Britain comes 1st with 9.94 seconds.

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