Sri Lankan shares hit 6-week closing low

Reuters – Sri Lankan shares closed marginally weaker for a seventh straight session on Tuesday, but analysts expect sentiment to turn positive following cabinet approval for a Chinese-built port.

The Colombo stock index fell 0.03 percent to 6,662.34, marking its lowest close since June 13, and its tenth fall in 11 sessions.

Sri Lanka’s cabinet cleared a revised agreement for its Chinese-built southern port of Hambantota on Tuesday which will bring in around 1 billion dollar investment, after terms of the first pact sparked widespread public anger in the island nation.

“With the cabinet approval granted for the port deal and exchange control bill presented to parliament today, we might see some positive sentiment returning to the market,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research, First Capital Holdings

Sri Lanka parliament on Tuesday debated a new exchange control bill.

Foreign investors bought shares worth a net 47.2 million rupees ($307,592.05) on Tuesday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 25 billion rupees.

Turnover was 359.8 million rupees, well below this year’s daily average of around 903 million rupees.

Shares of Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc fell 0.9 percent.

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