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CARDS & PAYMENTS | Cesar Tordesillas, India

Foreign inflows positive for Sri Lanka: central bank

Sri Lanka's Central Bank reported that foreign inflows including workers' remittances continued to hold up.

This cushions the current account of the Balance of Payments.

Cumulative inflows on account of workers' remittances during the first seven months of 2012 increased by 17 percent to 3.417 billion U.S. dollars, the Central Bank said in its latest report.

"Foreign currency inflows to the financial market continued to strengthen the capital and financial account of the BOP during the first seven months of 2012," it said.

Foreign investments at the Colombo Stock Exchange increased by 227 million U.S. dollars, on a net basis, by the end of August 2012.

There has been a significant increase in foreign investments in government securities, with net inflows to Treasury bills and Treasury bonds during the first eight months of 2012 amounting to 810 million U.S. dollars, it observed.

"Further, long-term inflows to the government amounted to 2,169 million U.S. dollars during the first seven months of 2012. In addition, long-term borrowings by commercial banks during January- August 2012 amounted to 927.5 million U.S. dollars."

Gross official reserves amounted to 7.099 billion U.S. dollars by end July 2012, while total international reserves, which include gross official reserves and foreign assets of commercial banks, amounted to 8.744 billion U.S. dollars.

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