Slight Dip

Dilshan Wirasekara, Chief Executive Officer of First Capital Treasuries PLC

Sri Lanka Telecom on Thursday reported lower profits for the first quarter ending March 31, a sign that the opening of the international voice market has affected its bottomline.
SLTs earlier had a monopoly on international calls, which accounted for about 40 percent of its total revenue. rn

rnNet profits for the period slipped to Rs. 755 mn from Rs. 798 mn in 2002. rn

rnOperating revenue rose 4 percent to Rs. 6.177 bn during the period. Domestic call revenue rose by 17 percent, helped by a 15 percent tariff increase. During this period SLT expanded its customer base by 14,808 lines.rn

rnBut the lucrative international call revenue fell by 11 percent, even though the outgoing traffic volume has increased. rn

rnRevenue from international traffic fell, despite a drop in tariffs. The telecom watchdog opened up the international market in March, which saw international tariffs fall by around 60 percent.rn

rnHowever the revenues generated by other services such as Data oriented services and Intern