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Economic & Market Bulletin
[October 18, 2005]

  Today's Stories
 
FEATURE: Economic & Market Bulletin

A weekly publication of the Economic Affairs Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Volume 2:Issue 31 
14th October, 2005 

GMG Airlines Bangladesh in Sri Lanka from November 

  • GMG Airlines Bangladesh will operate direct flights to Sri Lanka from November. It would also have a stop over in the Maldives. The airline is planning to operate two flights a week.

  • According to an official of the Bangladesh High Commission this would be the third international destination for the airline, which is Bangladesh’s leading and only private domestic airline.

 

TAFREN, SME Bank to assist SME industries

  • The Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) will sign two MoUs with Task Force to Rebuild the Nation (TAFREN) and the SME Bank to overcome the difficulties faced by the Small and Medium Entrepreneurs affected by the Tsunami.

  • At present, the “Back to Business” project concentrates on conducting workshops and business counselling and 1469 have participated in 41 workshops so far and Rs.29.4 million have been granted to 1393 affected SME people.

  • 346 women entrepreneurs have been granted Rs.6.9 million to restart their business. The loan facilities provided through Susahanaya amounts to Rs.2, 81.7 million as at August. Arrangements have been made to provide grants to 330 deserving SMEs in Trincomalee, Ampara, and Batticaloa districts, not exceeding Rs. 25,000 each.

  • The project has planned to provide employment for 50, 000 within the targeted period of three years and the business plans for SMEs will be done by the project.

 

Denmark defers Sri Lankan debt repayment 

  • Sri Lanka has reached an agreement with the Denmark to restructure the bilateral debt owed to Denmark. The agreement allows Sri Lanka to defer debt service payments to be made to Denmark in 2005.

  • The value of the total debt deferred is Danish Kroner 4.8 million (appromaximatly Rs.79 million). This one-year restructuring will free that amount for tsunami relief and reconstruction activities. The deferred debt will be repaid in seven equal successive and semi annual instalments, the first on 1st December 2006 and the last on 1st December 2009. Danish loans are free of interest and there will be no interest charge on the deferred amount.

 

Suntel launches WiFi HotSpots 

  • Suntel telecom network has launched WiFi HotSpots at popular locations across the country, providing high speed Internet connectivity to the Sri Lankan public. This was launched by Suntel’s ISP arm, Suntel wOw, earlier this year.

  • WiFi HotSpots are simple locations enabled with WiFi. WiFi is a short form for Wireless Fidelity, witch is a term for certain types of Wireless Local Area Networks (WLAN) that use specifications conforming to IEEE 802.11b.

  • WiFi has gained acceptance in many environments as an alternative to a wired LAN. WiFi allows people to access the Internet and receive email while on the move. WiFi enabled devices can send and receive data anywhere within the range of an access point or base station. Many airports, hotels and other services across the globe are WiFi enable.

 

Vidullanka to commence second Mini Hydro Project 

  • BOI approved Vidullanka Ltd, a company that constructs and operates mini hydropower projects in Sri Lanka, is making plans to commence their second mini hydropower project at Batatota Oya in Ratnapura.The Company is to invest Rs.240 million on the project, which is to commence next month.

  • According to the officials, the new project would have an output of 2MW with 8Gwh annual energy supply. This project will also increase the total energy generating to the national grid from 12 Gwh to 20 Gwh.

  • In addition to this project, the company is researching into the possibility of developing a Dendro Plant in Welikanda.This project is estimated at Rs.240 million, has a 2MW capacity and would require around 800 hectares of land area. The company is also looking into the feasibility of a wind power project.

 

New BOI investment projects

  • Capital Consolidated Lanka (Pvt) Ltd signed an agreement with the BOI to manufacture garments for export. This project represents an investment of Rs.136 million and will provide employment for over 585 workers. The factory will be located at Divulapitiya.

  • According to the sources the company intends to bring down row material from China for their manufacturing process. Currently, the company exports all products to the US market and making plans to expand operations to the UK. The company also plans to open a trading office and a training school for machine operators in Sri Lanka.

  • SNF Property Developers (Pvt) Ltd also signed agreement with BOI for the construction of an apartment complex. The project represents an investment of Rs.325 million and will be based at Aluthmawatte Road, Mutwal, Colombo 15.

 

EXCHANGE RATES ON 13, OCTOBER 2005 

Currency

Buying Rate

Selling Rate

U.S Dollar

100.95

101.97

Sterling Pound

175.87

178.69

Euro

120.47

122.78

Swiss Franc

  77.62

  79.63

Australian Dollars

  75.35

  77.30

Japanese Yen

0.8756

0.8943

 

EXCHANGE RATES OF GULF CURRNCIES

Country

Currency

Indicative Rate

Bahrain

Dinar

269.29

Kuwait

Dinar

347.54

Oman

Rial

263.60

Qatar

Riyal

  27.88

Saudi Arabia

Riyal

  27.05

UAE

Dirharm

  27.63

 (Source: Financial Times 14 October 2005)

 

 

 

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Last Updated Date: October 18, 2005 .