Sri Lanka delegation was led by Director General of the Africa Affairs of the Foreign Ministry B. Kandeepan and Director General for Asia and the Pacific of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia Asfaw Mollalign
Sri Lanka held Foreign Ministry Level Virtual Bilateral Consultations with the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia on June 9. In keeping with the current policy of the government, Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena has attached priority to further strengthening ties with countries in the Africa Region.
Bilateral Consultations between Sri Lanka and Ethiopia were held for the very first time. The Consultations focused on strengthening political, economic, social and cultural ties.
During the discussions, it was noted that currently three Sri Lankan apparel manufacturing companies and one chemical manufacturing company are operating in Ethiopia with a combined investment of over USD 15 million and providing employment to over 5,000 Ethiopians. It was further noted that there is potential for further investment by Sri Lankan companies in other sectors such as agro processing, hydro power generation and manufacture of apparel and chemicals. It was revealed that over 400 Sri Lankan professionals are currently employed in the hospitality and apparel manufacturing sectors in Ethiopia and there are opportunities for skilled employment for Sri Lankans in private sector companies in Ethiopia.
The discussions focused on enhancing bilateral trade. The total trade stood at USD 37 million last year. Sri Lanka’s exports to Ethiopia amounted to USD 36.83 million. It was noted that there is potential to further expand bilateral trade and it was agreed for the Chambers of Commerce of both countries to conduct studies in this regard.
Ethiopia expressed keen interest to continue bilateral cooperation in the education and health sectors. Both countries discussed closer cooperation at the multilateral level on areas of mutual interest including environment and climate change and implementing SDGs and to intensify cooperation through the African Union. The two countries agreed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic elations in a fitting manner next year.
U.S. confident SL would ensure required facilitation for U.S. investors
Sri Lankan government has pledged to address the pending policy issues and I am confident that once the pandemic subsides, concrete efforts will begin to improve ease of doing business and ensure the required facilitation for US investors, Martin Kelly, Charge d’ Affairs of the Embassy of the United States of America in Sri Lanka said recently speaking at the Sri Lanka Invest Forum 2021 held virtually through June 7-9, 2021
“Sri Lanka was among the first countries in the region to open its economy and offers the highest standards of living among other advanced indicators in South Asia. Over the last seventeen years, the country continued to transition from an agriculture commodity based economy to become world leader in textile and apparel, a major exporter of IT and communication related services and of course a world class destination for international tourists,” he said.
“Promoting trade and investment opportunities is one of the embassy’s top priorities, and a vital component of our efforts to encourage private sector led development and toward stronger ties between the two countries,” he said.
Kelly said that the government of Sri Lanka has promoted pro-business policies including tax benefits, to attract the U.S. and other foreign direct investments.
ComBank donates ICU beds to Kegalle Teaching Hospital
Commercial Bank Chairman Justice K. Sripavan and Managing Director S. Renganathan with representatives of the Bank and the Kegalle Hospital
The Commercial Bank of Ceylon has donated three Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds to the Teaching Hospital Kegalle, which receives over 80,000 admissions and 350,000 clinic visits, annually. The donation was made following a request from the hospital and will help it to provide seamless healthcare services to prevent non-pandemic related morbidities and mortalities while also treating patients who are COVID-19 positive.
The CSR Trust of the Bank has already gifted medical equipment and gear including Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) kits, face masks, surgical masks, hand sanitisers, Slit lamps, pulse oximeters, multipara monitors and oxygen concentrators to over 16 government hospitals. Commercial Bank also made a monetary donation to the National COVID-19 Healthcare and Social Security Fund set up by the government last year.
Trading activity gets slower among retail investors
Lankem Ceylon Rights Issue undersubscribed.
By Hiran H.Senewiratne
Stock trading at the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) was marginally positive yesterday and the number of retail investor participation was lower compared to previous trading days. Index heavy LOLC group which accounted for more than 30 percent of the turnover, contributed 20 points to the All Share Price Index, stock market analysts said.
Both indices moved upwards. All Share Price Index was up by 35.75 points and S&P SL20 up by 2.01 points. Turnover stood at Rs 1.74 billion sans a single crossing. In the retail market top six companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were LOLC Rs 510 million (1.28 million shares traded), Expolanka Holdings Rs 197 million (4.1 million shares traded), Melstacorp Rs 137 million (2.6 million shares traded), Browns Investments Rs 71.5 million (11.3 million shares traded), Windforce Rs 68.2 million (3.5 million shares traded) and Hayleys Holdings Rs 54.8 million (730,000 shares traded).
Index heavy LOLC, which contributed 20 points to the All Share Price Index, appreciated its share price by Rs 18.75 or 4.85 percent. Its share price started trading at Rs 386.25 and at the end of the day it moved up to Rs 405.
A pioneer in renewable energy, Vidullanka PLC has successfully completed raising additional capital of Rs. 253 million to fuel its expansion drive in the solar power sphere.
Lankem Ceylon Plc, Rs. 677 million worth Rights Issue has been undersubscribed. When the issue closed the Company managed to draw only subscriptions for 17.6 million shares worth Rs. 352.3 million. The original plan was to issue 33.85 million shares at Rs. 20 each aiming at raising Rs. 677 million. The basis was one new ordinary share for every one share held. Funds were to be raised to augment working capital requirements.
During the day 67.9 million share volumes changed hands in 17564 share transactions.
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