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Sri Lanka’s official reserves estimated at USD 3.5 billion

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The level of gross official reserves of the country were estimated at around USD 3.5 billion as of the end of September 2023, according to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL).

However, this includes the swap facility from the People’s Bank of China to the tune of USD 1.4 billion, which is subject to conditionalities on usability.

In its latest monetary policy review, the CBSL said that during the eight months ending in August 2023, Sri Lanka’s trade deficit decreased notably, with a significant decrease in merchandise imports due to lower demand and import restrictions, and a relatively low decline in merchandise exports.

Earnings from tourism and workers’ remittances improved considerably thus far in 2023 and are expected to improve further in the period ahead, it said.

Net foreign investment inflows were recorded in the government securities market so far during the year despite some sizeable outflows in recent months.

The Sri Lanka rupee recorded an appreciation of around 12 per cent against the US dollar thus far during the year, the central bank said.

Following the settlement of the bilateral currency swap with Bangladesh Bank and the provision of liquidity to the domestic foreign exchange market to facilitate the restructuring of Sri Lanka Development Bonds as part of the domestic debt optimisation (DDO) operation, the level of gross official reserves was estimated at around US dollars 3.5 billion as at end September 2023, including the swap facility from the People’s Bank of China.

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