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Sri Lanka waiting for best time to raise up to $1.5bn bond COLOMBO: Sri Lanka is waiting for an opportune moment to launch a sovereign bond of up to $1.5 billion this year, possibly with a longer tenure to roll over its debts, Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran told Reuters on Tuesday.Speculation over an interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve and Greece possibly exiting the euro zone have been weighing on emerging markets' bond pricing at the moment, Mahendran said."So we want to wait for an opportune moment. When that volatility decreases then we will be able to get the best possible rate for our borrowing," he said."I will definitely go for a longer tenure, may be even a 20-year or 30-year is something to look for. We don't want to increase the interest rate burden of the country."Copyright Reuters, 2015

Costly shift to new credit cards won't fix security issues CHICAGO: New technology about to be deployed by credit card companies will require US consumers to carry a new kind of card and retailers across the nation to upgrade payment terminals. But despite a price tag of $8.65 billion, the shift will address only a narrow range of security issues.Credit card companies have set an October deadline for the switch to chip-enabled cards, which come with embedded computer chips that make them far more difficult ...

Indian government, central bank set inflation targets MUMBAI: India's government has signed a deal with the central bank to set formal inflation targets for the first time, seeking to end damaging price volatility in the country of 1.2 billion people.Rising food prices cause huge hardship for India's millions of poor and central bank governor Raghuram Rajan has made controlling inflation a priority since taking the helm of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), resisting calls to reduce interest rates.The agreement, signed on ...

German retail sales rise strongly in January FRANKFURT: German retail sales, a closely watched measure of household confidence, rose strongly in January, official data showed on Wednesday. Retailers' sales climbed by 2.9 percent in January compared with December, the federal statistics office Destatis said in a statement.The previous month, retail sales had increased by 0.6 percent. On a 12-month basis, business improved even more, jumping by 5.3 percent in January compared with the same month last year, the statisticians calculated.That was the ...

China rate cuts just the start as growth slows BEIJING: Factory employment has been falling for more than a year in the workshop of the world as Chinese growth slows, and analysts expect more intervention by the central bank after its second interest rate cut in just three months.The weekend's rate reduction comes as authorities contend with rising deflationary threats in the world's second-largest economy and an unusually weak currency.Communist Party leaders are seeking to prevent the growth deceleration from careening out of control.Gross ...

Swedish government proposes abolition of budget surplus target STOCKHOLM: Sweden's centre-left government wants to remove the country's budget surplus target and replace it with a balanced budget target to free up money for important investments, the finance minister and the prime minister said on Tuesday.Sweden introduced a budget surplus target of 1 percent over a business cycle in 1997 in the wake of a financial crisis which saw budget deficits and sovereign debt skyrocket. Since then Sweden's national debt has decreased to around ...

An Iran with nuclear weapon would threaten Israel, US: Rice WASHINGTON: An Iran with a nuclear bomb would threaten Israel and the United States, an advisor to President Barack Obama said on Monday, amid a crisis between Washington and Israel over Tehran's atomic ambitions."Given their support for terrorism, the risk for a nuclear arms race in the region and the danger to the entire global nonproliferation regime, an Iran with a nuclear weapon would not just be a threat to Israel, it is also an ...


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.703 bln
Exports $2.156 bln
Imports $3.859 bln
WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
Reserves $16.137 bln