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IMF expects agreement with creditors soon

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has expressed strong confidence in Sri Lanka’s economic reform progress and anticipates that agreements with external commercial creditors, consistent with program parameters, will be reached soon.

News 1st has reported that Julie Kozack, Director of the Communication Department of the IMF, conveyed this in response to a question raised by journalist Zulfick Farzan.

The news report further states:

Julie Kozack, the Director of the IMF’s Communications Department, told a briefing that on June 12th, the Executive Board will meet to discuss the 2nd review and the Article IV consultation on Sri Lanka.

She said that Sri Lanka’s macroeconomic policy reforms are showing promising results. Notable achievements include rapid disinflation, robust reserve accumulation, and encouraging signs of economic growth—all while maintaining financial stability.

The program’s overall performance remains strong, with most quantitative and structural conditions for the second phase met, albeit sometimes with minor delays. Ongoing reforms continue to address critical areas.

“Program performance is strong, with most quantitative and structural conditionality for the second review met, or implemented with delay, and reforms are still on going in some areas,” she said.

The next crucial steps involve debt restructuring.

“The next steps on the debt restructuring, are indeed to conclude negotiations with external commercial creditors and to implement agreements in-principle with the official creditors. The Domestic Debt Operations are largely completed. Debt restructuring discussions are continuing. Most specifically, the authorities have been holding extensive discussions with external official creditors regarding an MOU, with the Official Creditor Committee, and the Final Agreements with the Export Import Bank of China,” she added.

Additionally, negotiations with the China Development Bank are at an advanced stage.

The IMF expects that agreements with external commercial creditors, aligned with program parameters, will be finalized soon.

” There is a strong expectation that agreements with external commercial creditors consistent with program parameters will be reached soon. Overall, we assess that there has been sufficiently strong progress, on the debt restructuring front,” she noted.

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Fresh protest in Jaffna over poaching by Indian fishermen

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Associations representing fishermen in the north today  staged a protest in front of the Indian Consulate in Jaffna demanding to stop the Indian trawler that were trespassing in the Sri Lankan waters.

They also met the Indian Consul General Sai Murali and handed over a letter.

The move came as the  government was planning to  take up the issue of poaching with the visiting Indian Foreign Affairs Minister Dr S. Jaishnakar  who is due on June 20 in Colombo.

When President Ranil Wickremesinghe visited New Delhi on June 9 to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the matter was also raised in a separate meeting with Minister Dr Jaishnakar as well.

Fisheries Minister Douglas Devananda earlier told the Sunday Times that the government will take up the matter with the visiting Indian Foreign Minister this week as the government is consistent with its policy of preventing Indian fishermen from robbing billions worth of fisheries resources from the Northern Sea.

“As a nation, we have to protect our resources, interests and the livelihood of our fisherfolks. I hope to raise the issue in the next Cabinet meeting (June 19) as well,” Minister Devananda said.

Days before the annual breeding ban was lifted, a group of fishermen’s unions based in North handed over a petition on Tuesday to officials at the Indian Consulate General office in Jaffna requesting them to make immediate steps to prevent Indian fishermen coming into Sri Lankan waters at the expense of their livelihood.

The fishermen unions which formed a collective outfit as Northen Fishermen’s Allaince requested President Wickremesinghe in a petition urged authorities to “expedite their maximum efforts to monitoring and preventing the daily incursion of thousands of Tamil Nadu trawlers every Monday, Wednesday and Saturday evenings,”

The two-month-long ban came into effect from April 14 onwards and was lifted on Friday is enforced to facilitate the breeding of fish banks in the ocean and maintain the equilibrium of marine sources for sustainability.

Currently, Indian fishermen who engage in fishing in Sri Lankan territorial waters are arrested by the Navy and Coast Guard and subjected to legal action after their trawlers are seized.

Following the legal action in which the Magistrate courts hand in a suspended sentence of eighteen months for engaging in fishing without a license, fishermen are released and repatriated through the assistance of Indian diplomatic missions.

(sundaytimes.lk)

(This story, originally published by sundaytimes.lk has not been edited by SLM staff)

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President tells Minister Wijeyadasa to quit?

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The Senior Vice Chairman of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Prof. Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa has claimed that President Ranil Wickremesinghe has pressured Justice Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, to resign from the government.

He alleged that Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe revealed this during a politburo meeting.

However, ‘Ada Derana’ reports that upon contacting Minister Rajapakshe, he said that the statement made by Prof. Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa is untrue.  

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 Railways TU action called off

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The Sri Lanka Railways Station Masters’ Union (SLRSMU) has decided to call off their planned trade union action as their demands are being reviewed by the Public Service Commission. 

The Commission is expected to announce its decision by Thursday (20). Meanwhile, train operations are continuing as usual today, according to the SLRSMU.

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