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November 21, 2016    Reading Time: 2 minutes

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President of China meets Chief Executive of Hong Kong at APEC summit in Lima. Image Credit -pxhidalgo/ depositphotos

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IMF approves USD 162 million disbursement to Sri Lanka

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the disbursement of USD 162 million to Sri Lanka, following the first review of the economic reform programme supported by its Extended Fund Facility (EFF). The total funds released to the country through the EFF is currently USD 325.1 million.

Acting Chair and Deputy Managing Director of the IMF, Tao Zhang, stated that Sri Lanka’s performance was ‘broadly satisfactory despite challenging circumstances.’

ADB launches subregional economic cooperation plan in Sri Lanka

The Country Director of the Asian Development Bank, Sri Widowati, has launched The South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Operational Plan 2016-2025, in Colombo on 18 November.

The plan aims to enhance economic cooperation in South Asia by promoting greater cross-border connectivity in transport, energy, and trade procedures. Mr. Widowati emphasised that Sri Lanka could ‘promote export-oriented manufacturing and foreign direct investments’ to realise the benefits of the SASEC programme.

Deputy Foreign Minister addresses Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association AGM

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Harsha De Silva, has stated that changes in US trade policy could have significant repercussions for Sri Lanka, due to its dependency on the US economy. The Deputy Minister made this statement at the Annual General Meeting of the Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters Association on 20 November.

He emphasised that the Sri Lankan apparel industry has to prepare itself for the effects of Brexit and political changes in the US.


Incumbent German Chancellor to seek fourth term

The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, has announced that she will seek a fourth term in next year’s election.

Chancellor Merkel, who came to power in 2005, has recently experienced a decline in popularity, which has been attributed to her decision to accept nearly one million refugees into Germany in 2015. Chancellor Merkel has stated that her goal is to ‘keep Germany together’.

Former President Sarkozy defeated in French primary

The former President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, has been defeated in a primary to choose the presidential candidate from France’s centre-right Republican party. Mr. Sarkozy came in third, behind Mr. François Fillon and Mr. Alain Juppe, both former Prime Ministers.

Mr. Fillon and Mr. Juppe will face each other on 27 November, to determine the winner of the primary. The winner of the primary is likely to run against the far-right candidate, Marine Le Pen.

Chinese President and Hong Kong Chief Executive meet at APEC summit

China’s President, Xi Jinping, and the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Leung Chun-ying, have met on the sidelines of the the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit.

President Xi urged Mr. Leung to uphold national unity, and maintain social and political stability.  Chief Executive Leung reiterated that there is “no room whatsoever” for independence from China, as advocated by some in Hong Kong’s ‘localist’ movement and in related street protests.

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