“The sooner we have political stability the better”: Dialog Chief

July 08, 2015 (LBO) – Political uncertainty coming to an end is a good thing for all listed companies as this will lead the way for more investments, Hans Wijayasuriya, Group Chief Executive, Dialog Axiata said.

“The sooner we see stability the better,” he said.

“This will also pave the way for more foreign investments,”

“But we have been investing aggressively this year and we hope to accelerate as we are have been neutral to uncertainty.”

The company has invested 1.7 billion US dollars in Sri Lanka up to now and in 2015 so far about 40 million dollar had been invested in infrastructure.

Wijayasuriya says the islands telco market is one of the most overcrowded in the region with five mobile operators serving a population of 21 million.

“The market is too big for five players, so consolidation might be a good idea.”

He made these comments after ringing the opening bell of the Colombo Stock Exchange, Wednesday.

Sri Lanka telecom sector consists of three larger mobile operators – Dialog, Mobitel, a subsidiary of state-run Sri Lanka Telecom, and Etisalat, a subsidiary of Emirates Telecommunications Corporation of the UAE) and two later-entrants, Hutchison Telecommunications Lanka, a subsidiary of Hutchison Whampoa of Hong Kong, and Bharti Airtel Lanka, a subsidiary of India’s Bharti Airtel.

A one-off “super gains” tax of 25 percent on profit and a tax of 250 million rupees on each mobile operator were imposed on Sri Lanka’s telecom industry by the new government that came into power in January 2015.