Sri Lanka stocks firm as AMW buyers mop up shares

July 29, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks closed higher Tuesday with the Dubai construction firm that took control of Associated Motorways (AMW) yesterday continuing to buy into the stock, brokers said. Associated Electrical Corporation (AEC), the controlling shareholder of AMW which sold out, fell 4.83 percent or 77.25 rupees to 1,522.50.

The All Share Price Index gained 0.21 percent (5.11 points) to close at 2,408.70 while the more liquid Milanka went up 0.24 percent (6.83 points) to 2,866.80.

Turnover was 228 million rupees.

The indices were driven higher by gains in Bukit Darah, Hatton National Bank and Ceylon Tobacco Company.

Some 282,400 shares of AMW were traded with the stock closing flat at 174.50 rupees, the price at which Dubai’s Al Futtaim Engineering took control by buying a 71.15 percent stake Monday for a total of 6.91 billion rupees.

The firm has said it would make a mandatory offer for the remaining shares.

“We continued to buy today at 174.50,” said Ray Abeywardena, chief executive of DFCC Stockbrokers which did the deal. “We’ll continue to pick up whatever is available.”