Sri Lanka foreign reserves US$3.2bn: CB governor

Aug 25, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s foreign reserves have topped 3.2 billion dollars after a large inflow into the country’s government securities market, Central Bank Governor Nivard Cabraal said.

“You will see enormous opportunities,” Cabraal told a forum on Islamic financial instruments organized by Rating Agency Malaysia in Colombo.

“There will be extraordinary positions that you have to take.”

Market watchers were surprised at the volumes of external flows coming into the government securities market in recent days, which were the largest private capital flows the country has seen in its history.

He said the money came despite unfavorable ratings. Fitch has given Sri Lanka a B+ sovereign rating with a ‘negative’ outlook. Standard $ Poor’s has rated Sri Lanka B with a ‘negative’ outlook.

“We were not happy with the ratings that we received,” he said. “In fact we were disappointed. But within the last 10 days 1.2 billion has flowed into the county.”

Sri Lanka has also called bids from international fund managers to raise a 500 million US dollar bond from international markets.

Sri Lanka has seen large flows of capital into government securities markets after th