Sunday, 11 April 2021 10:18

Government goes to Oman with the begging bowl Featured

The Government is seeking support from multiple sources including Oman to manage Sri Lanka’s upcoming debt repayments and reiterated commitment to meeting its obligations even as reserves slipped to $ 4.1 billion at the end of March.

The rupee has also been subject to persistent depreciation, caused partly by dollar demand for imports ahead of the festive season, according to analysts, reaching the Rs. 203.59 mark yesterday.

State Minister of Finance Ajith Nivard Cabraal is in Oman with a delegation to discuss potential forex assistance from the Bank of Muscat. Government officials are also engaged in talks with Bangladesh.

The overtures come after Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa visited Bangladesh last month and met with the Governor of Bangladesh Bank, which functions as their Central Bank.

Central Bank Governor Prof. Lakshman on Thursday said they were awaiting confirmation from the China Development Bank (CDB) for a long-delayed loan of about $ 700 million.

The Government has been in negotiations with CDB since last year when it approved a $ 500 million loan to prop-up reserves.

Sri Lanka has two large debt repayments in May and July with the former expected to be about $ 720 million and the latter, $ 1 billion.

 

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