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Asia Securities reiterates view of no sovereign default; swap conclusion a confidence booster

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In a report issued recently, the research arm of leading independent Investment Banking firm Asia Securities, reiterated that it does not see a risk of sovereign default at this point. The eagerly anticipated announcement of the USD 1.5bn currency swap agreement with China this week is expected to provide a significant boost to local and foreign investor sentiment.

Following the news, yields on the short-end of the International Sovereign Bond (ISB) curve plunged in response (implying a rise in bond prices) indicating greater confidence of the international market in the Government of Sri Lanka’s ability to honor its debt obligations. The USD 1.5bn swap is a much-needed boost for the reserves position which stood at USD 4.6bn by end February.

The report further forecasts that, in 2021, estimated capital account inflows (not including any potential investments into Port City) should exceed outflows in the capital account. The yield on the government sovereign bond maturing in July this year dropped by over 20 percentage points, in secondary trading, to 14.56% on the 11th of March. Asia Securities Research further stated that the announced finalization of this swap agreement opens up the possibility of further bilateral financing arrangements that could be successfully negotiated by the government in 2Q 2021 onwards.

Reflecting on the report, Chairman of Asia Securities, Dumith Fernando stated that “Against the backdrop of COVID-19 recovery, we see bilateral and multilateral financing to be more practical near-term substitutes to an IMF lending program. Contrary to widely expressed opinions by international firms, in my view, a conditional IMF program may not provide the counter-cyclical growth runway that Sri Lanka needs right now.” He further stated that “As fiscal space remains constrained to practically meet performance target of an IMF agreement, inflows through a customized approach would be more suited for Sri Lanka in turn enabling a more deliberate growth agenda. An IMF program coupled with further structural reform would be more viable at a future time once the entire world has moved beyond some of its near-term headwinds.”

 

 



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Business

Seylan Bank offers amazing discounts for Avurudu

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With Avurudu just around the corner, Seylan Bank PLC is offering amazing discounts to customers purchasing daily essentials, electronics, clothing, gifts, and more. The bank with a heart will celebrate the New Year with “Ratatama Super, Avurudu Offers with Seylan Cards” and “Seylan Tikiri – Season of Gifts and Laughter”.

The bank with a heart, commenced these exciting offers and promotions to provide the best Avurudu experience to its customers young and old, and to reward them for their continued loyalty to the bank, in the spirit of festivity.

“At Seylan Bank, we want to make your Avurudu an unforgettable experience,” said Gamika De Silva, Assistant General Manager, Marketing and Sales at Seylan Bank. “These two promotions underscore our customer-centric approach which focuses on providing products and services that enhance the overall customer experience and convenience, adding value to your experience with the Bank with a Heart.”

The Bank has partnered with leading supermarket chains on selected promotions; with Keells offering 30% off on fresh meat during the weekends, Cargills providing 20% off on total bills during selected weekends, Glomark offering 20% off on the total bill on every Sunday for a limited time, Laugfs Super providing 20% off on a range of goods on every Monday for a limited time, and Premasiri Supermarket offering 20% off on vegetables & 10% off on fruits on every Wednesday & Thursday during the promotion period.

 

 

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OPPO launches Avurudu song to spread seasonal cheer

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OPPO recently launched an Avurudu jingle ahead of the Sinhalese & Tamil New year. Sung by OPPO brand ambassador & The Voice coach Umaria Sinhawamsa, the song also features popular personalities including actor& singer Gayan Gunawardena and choreographer Ramod Malaka& his dance troupe, Cool Steps.

The visual for the song has been shot in a scenic village atmosphere & features a host of New Year traditions of great cultural significance. The video also features the newly launched fan-favorite OPPO F19 Pro which is on offer during the season. On the first day of sales alone, the F19 Pro recorded a 200% increase in sales compared to its predecessor F17 Pro.

CEO of OPPO Sri Lanka Bob Li said: “This project helped us to immerse into Sri Lankan culture better. In keeping with the spirit of the season, evolving & upgrading, OPPO has launched two concurrent promotions: ERABADU WASI from 2-13 April & OPPO SERVICE WASI from 5 – 18 April.”

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SLIM elects new president and EXCO at 51st AGM

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The Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) held its 51st AGM, which saw the induction of its new President Thilanka Abeywardena, who will spearhead the Institute as its 43rd president. This appointment is a milestone in the history of the Institute as Ms. Abeywardena became the first ever female to hold the position of President.

The AGM was held on 7th April, 2021 at Marino Beach Hotel, Colombo. Both a new Council of Management as well as an Executive Committee were appointed during the meeting.

Thilanka currently holds the position of the CMO Lead, South East Asia Emerging Markets at Microsoft Sri Lanka (Pvt) Ltd. and leads marketing and communications across nine Asian countries; Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka.

The newly appointed Executive Committee comprises ten experienced marketing professionals:

SLIM is the apex body for Marketing in Sri Lanka and has been promoting marketing excellence and elevating the status of marketing since 1970.

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