CB Treasury Bills/Bonds for Lankan migrant workers
Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal
The Central Bank (CB) has launched a program to sell and purchase
Treasury Bills/Treasury Bonds issued by the Government for Sri Lanka’s
diaspora and migrant workforce.
This will promote inward remittances to Sri Lanka.
“Currently more than 1.3 million Sri Lankans are abroad and they
remit more than Rs 3 billion to the country.
Therefore, issuance of these instruments will ensure inflow of
capital into the country by the Sri Lankan diaspora and migrant
workforce,”Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal told a media
conference in Colombo yesterday.
He said with the global recession funds worth more than US $ 1.2
trillion went out of Asia to the West but due to the prudent economic
polices only US $ 450 million worth of foreign reserves went out of Sri
Lanka. Therefore, authorized dealers have been informed and Sri Lankans
living abroad have been granted permission to join this scheme and it is
expected to raise US$ 500 million from this issue.
The total investment in Treasury Bills should not exceed 10 per cent
of the total value of those two instruments outstanding at any given
point of time. Investors are not utilizing funds available under this
scheme as collateral.
However, they are permitted to utilize funds available in NRFC and
RFC accounts or other foreign currency accounts in Sri Lanka to purchase
Treasury Bills/Bonds under this scheme, he said.
Deputy Governor W.A. Wijewardean said with the launch of the scheme
investors can withdraw and deposit funds at any time in any given
currency and has introduced a special account, “TIERA-D” which could be
opened in the name of the investor. The eligible individual investors or
by two or more eligible investors held funds, is simple to invest in, he
The Central Bank has assured investors that they can withdraw or
deposit their funds without any hindrance and they have set up a
“Sinking Fund” under the patronage of CB’s Monetary Board to ensure
payment of funds in any requested foreign currency, he said.
Wijewardena said they would organize many road shows and awareness
programs in five continents. To facilitate these activities the CB
appointed seven commercial banks as lead managers overseas.