BoP exceeds US $ 2bn; reserves at 9bn
The net impact of Sri Lanka’s total transactions between its external counterparts, measured by the balance of payment (BoP), recorded a surplus of US $ 2.02 billion for the seven months ended July 2014, supported by strong remittance flows, tourism earnings, portfolio flows and long-term loans by the government.
This is in contrast to a deficit of US $ 179.7 million in the corresponding period last year.
According to the latest data available for the month of August, tourism has earned US $ 202.7 million recording an increase of 22.2 percent, while for the first eight months the earnings were at a record high of US $ 1.45 billion, up 32.1 percent YoY.
Worker remittances grew by 15.2 percent in July to US $ 606.7 million, while the total for the first seven months were at US $ 3.97 billion, an increase of 11.2 percent YoY.
Long-term loans raised by the government during the same period were at US $ 1.1 billion, compared to US $ 1.05 billion during the corresponding period in 2013.
The net inflows to the government securities market were US $ 231.8 million in the proportion of US $ 81.7 million and US $ 150.1 million between the treasury bonds and bills.
The portfolio flows to the Colombo Stock Exchange were US $ 84.3 million.
Further, US $ 125 million was raised by the commercial banks and the licensed specialized banks during the period.
Meanwhile, the gross official reserves up to end-August were at record highs of US $ 9.2 billion, equivalent to 5.9 months of imports.
Sri Lanka’s BoP is closely linked to the country’s high fuel bill.