Wednesday, September 27, 2023

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Sri Lanka Original Narrative Summary: 09/09

  1. Govt’s Face Value “money printing” debt passes the Rs.3,000 billion mark and reaches 3,008 billion.
  2. LankaClear CEO Channa De Silva says Sri Lanka has over Rs.1,100bn worth of currency notes but only Rs.281 bn of such notes is banked and a staggering Rs.829 bn is not in circulation and kept by people in safety boxes or in personal care”.
  3. UN Human Rights High Commissioner Volker Turk says the UNHRC must demand that the international community undertakes “targeted sanctions such as asset freezes and travel bans against those credibly alleged to have perpetrated gross international human rights violations or serious humanitarian law violations” in Sri Lanka: further recommends “robust safety nets and social protection for the most vulnerable from the negative spill-overs of economic restructuring”.
  4. President Ranil Wickremasinghe submits a “Defence Review – 2030” for Cabinet approval: President’s Media Office says it will “serve as a crucial step to adapt Sri Lanka’s defence policy” and that “the review not only analyzes the current regional challenges but also outlines a roadmap for the future, encompassing both the immediate future & steps beyond 2030”.
  5. Colombo District Court rejects the petition filed by former SLFP General Secretary MP Dayasiri Jayasekara: refuses to issue an injunction order preventing the suspension of the MP’s party membership.
  6. Political sources say MP Dayasiri Jayasekara’s removal as SLFP General Secretary appears to be a move to eliminate obstacles to the Party’s support for President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the next Presidential election: also say the SLFP MPs who hold ministerial positions in the Govt have been behind the sacking of Jayasekara.
  7. No-Confidence Motion against Minister of Health Keheliya Rambukwella defeated in Parliament: 73 in favour:113 against.
  8. Official Reserve Assets decrease by USD 167mn (4.4%) to USD 3,598mn by end-August’23 from USD 3,765mn at end-July’23: analysts say the unpaid Forex debt now exceeds USD 5,000mn.
  9. Fitch Ratings reconfirms SL’s Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating at ‘Restricted Default’: says the Reserves of around USD 3.8bn in July 2023 are well below the USD 7.3bn average over 2014-2019: the Reserve at end-Dec’21 was USD 8.2bn, and even after issuing ISB’s of USD 12.0bn, selling H’tota Port for USD 1.0bn, and borrowing USD 2.0bn from China during 2015 to 2019, the Reserve was down to USD 7.6bn at end-Dec’19.
  10. Deputy Chairman of the Manning Market’s Traders Assn H T N Samaratunga says the traders of the market had thrown away 8 to 10 tons of vegetables from Monday to Wednesday: also say the price of vegetables have dropped significantly, but there are fewer buyers.

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