Sri Lankan shares rise on retail buying; rupee at 6-week closing low

Updated 25 April 2013
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Sri Lankan shares rise on retail buying; rupee at 6-week closing low

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan shares rose for a second straight session to hit a near seven-month high helped by retail investor buying on hopes that interest rates will ease, while the rupee closed at its lowest level in six weeks on dollar demand from importers.
The main stock index 0.85 percent, or 50.21 points, to 5,933.73, its highest close since Oct. 1, 2012.
Shares have been rising on hopes of a fall in interest rates after Treasury Secretary P. B. Jayasundera and the central bank said official interest rates could ease in May and June.
"We have seen retailers coming back to the market on the hope of interest rates coming down," said a stockbroker.
The turnover was 975.3 million rupees ($ 7.69 million), around this year's daily average of 961 million rupees.
Foreign investors were net sellers for the first time in 17 sessions.
They sold a net 161.5 million rupees worth shares but remained net buyers of 8.26 billion rupees so far this year.
Last year, the bourse saw a net inflow of $ 303 million.
The rupee fell for a seventh straight session to 126.85/90 per dollar, its lowest close since March 11, due to demand from importers for the greenback despite a state bank selling dollars, currency dealers said.
The currency had ended at 126.78/85 on Tuesday.


India court allows Vedanta to reopen controversial plant

Updated 16 December 2018
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India court allows Vedanta to reopen controversial plant

  • The city of Thoothukudi had been rocked by long-running protests over the plant
  • Protesters say it harms the environment and the health of those living near it, claims the company has long denied

NEW DELHI: An Indian copper smelter at the centre of a police shooting that left 13 protesters dead has been granted permission to reopen by the country's environmental court.
The Sterlite plant, owned by British mining giant Vedanta Resources, was closed after the bloody police crackdown in May on protesters who say the smelter is poisoning the air and water.
Vedanta Resources, owned by Indian-born billionaire tycoon Anil Agarwal, had appealed against the plant's closure by the state government of Tamil Nadu where it is located.
The National Green Tribunal, a federal authority which rules on environmental matters, ordered Saturday that the plant in Thoothukudi city could resume operation.
Sterlite CEO P. Ramnath on Sunday welcomed the decision.
"We are happy that all those affected by the closure will get back their source of livelihood and the town of Thoothukudi will revert to normalcy," he said in a statement on Twitter.
The Tamil Nadu state government has said it will appeal the decision in India's highest court.
The city of Thoothukudi, previously known as Tuticorin, had been rocked by long-running protests over the plant, one of the largest in India.
Protesters say it harms the environment and the health of those living near it, claims the company has long denied.
The demonstrations intensified in May after Vedanta sought to double the annual capacity of the plant.
On May 22, police opened fire on thousands of protesters, killing 13 people.
The plant was shuttered by the state government in the aftermath of the shooting.
The company denies all charges and maintains that it adheres to the best environmental standards.
The federal green court ordered Vedanta to spend one billion rupees ($13.9 million) over three years to assist local communities.
But it criticised the pollution regulators in Tamil Nadu, saying they stalled the case by tying up the company in paperwork.