Wednesday, July 24, 2024

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Sri Lanka Original Narrative Summary: 02/07

  1. President Ranil Wickremesinghe announces Sri Lanka is pioneering the new debt sustainability analysis framework for middle-income countries to manage its $37 billion foreign debt: Agreements with official creditors, including India, Japan, France, and China Exim Bank, include extended grace periods and low-interest rates, reducing Sri Lanka’s remaining debt service to $5 billion.
  2. A gathering of SJB MPs unanimously decides against endorsing the formation of a national government under the current President, Ranil Wickremesinghe: The proposal, introduced by MP Buddhika Pathirana on the 2nd of this month, received unanimous approval from the SJB Parliamentary group.
  3. The remains of former Tamil National Alliance Leader R. Sampanthan will be brought to Parliament on July 3: His body will lie in state in the Assembly Hall from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm for members and staff to pay their respects: Consequently, Parliamentary sittings are cancelled: A special statement from the President will replace today’s scheduled debt restructuring debate.
  4. Agriculture Minister Mahinda Amaraweera announces the World Food Programme (WFP), guided by UNCTAD, will supply 55,000 metric tonnes of MOP fertiliser to Sri Lankan farmers for free: This fertiliser, crucial for paddy cultivation, will be used over the next two cropping seasons: The government reduced the price from Rs. 14,000 to Rs. 9,000 per tonne and secured Cabinet approval for distribution costs of Rs. 3.5 billion.
  5. Urban Development and Housing Minister Prasanna Ranatunga announces the Government settled Rs. 200 billion debt owed to construction contractors: This debt, stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic and economic crisis, delayed payments to contractors due to technical issues: Around 20% of Sri Lanka’s workforce is in construction, contributing 8-9% to the Gross National Product: Committees proposed 50 measures to revive the sector, with 14 areas prioritised for immediate improvement.
  6. The Colombo District Court issues an interim injunction against the SLFP’s expulsion of MP Dayasiri Jayasekara as party member and General Secretary: Jayasekara contested his removal, prompting the court action after SLFP’s chair, Maithripala Sirisena, notified him of a disciplinary inquiry: Jayasekara was ousted on September 5, 2023, but Sirisena clarified it was a temporary suspension pending further proceedings, offering Jayasekara other roles in the party.
  7. LITRO Chief Muditha Peiris announces a reduction in domestic LP gas cylinder prices from midnight today (02): The new prices are: Rs. 3,690 for the 12.5 kg cylinder (reduced by Rs. 100), Rs. 1,482 for the 5 kg cylinder (reduced by Rs. 40), and Rs. 694 for the 2.3 kg cylinder (reduced by Rs. 18).
  8. Speaker Mahinda Yapa Abeywardena says the Supreme Court ruled today that specific clauses in the Economic Transformation Bill are unconstitutional, requiring a parliamentary supermajority or referendum approval to pass: explains amendments could allow these clauses to pass with a simple majority, based on the court’s decision.
  9. The Sri Lanka Police announces the immediate transfer of fifteen senior officers, including six Deputy Inspectors General (DIGs), due to operational requirements: This move, approved by the National Police Commission, affects DIGs G.I.D.R. Wijesinghe, G.A.N.L. Wijesena, I.B.T. Sugathapala, L.A.U. Sarath Kumara, A.L.U.N Liyanage, and A.S.P.C. Wedamulla: Additionally, the transfers involve six SSPs and three SPs, including the Director of the Police Special Bureau.
  10. Dasun Shanaka (46) and Angelo Mathews (37) powered Kandy Falcons to a six-wicket victory over Dambulla Sixes with 16 balls remaining in the Lanka Premier League opener: Chasing 180, Dinesh Chandimal scored 65 off 40 balls. Shanaka, who took 3/20 earlier, and Mathews added 72 runs for the fifth wicket. Dambulla’s Mark Chapman (91) and Chamindu Wickramasinghe (62) had set 179/4.

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