Sri Lanka Ventures into Money Laundering to Overcome Balance of Payment Crisis
Posted on November 16th, 2015

Dilrook Kannangara

Tough times call for tough measures. That is exactly what the debt ridden Lankan government has done. Money laundering is the latest state sponsored industry in the island nation. A few weeks ago, the finance minister appealed to locals and foreigners with Swiss bank accounts to move their accounts to Sri Lanka with the promise of a higher US dollar interest rate (2% to 3% higher in dollar terms). Depositors will not be asked any questions.

According to the government, the response has been encouraging. Already $450 million has been deposited in Sri Lankan banks. The debt-ridden nation is playing a very dangerous game of money laundering similar to what BCCI (Bank of Credit and Commerce International) did in the 1970s and 1980s. This may result in Sri Lankan banks being classified as money laundering dens; a pariah state of illicit banking practices shunned by other countries. Of particular note is the claim that among the depositors are Saudis and Qataris. A number of international bodies have highlighted the role some Saudis and Qataris play in financing AQ and ISIS terror operations. Moving funds to Sri Lanka may facilitate increased radicalisation of South Asia using its underdeveloped financial monitoring mechanisms.

Black money earned through narcotics, human trafficking, international prostitution rings and illicit weapons trade will be laundered into white money in Sri Lanka. The cost of servicing this new unofficial debt is colossal. Paying 2% to 3% more than the dollar rate will cost taxpayers over $20 million a year and interest is compounded annually. This is certainly not good governance. It is brash and negligent, and even potentially illegal. Sri Lanka is thrown from the frying pan to the fire.

7 Responses to “Sri Lanka Ventures into Money Laundering to Overcome Balance of Payment Crisis”

  1. Lorenzo Says:

    Fantastic Karunkaya strategy! What a country.

    PB JAYASUNDARA UNP accused of corruption is parachuted into a consultant role!! YAPA(LA)NAYA at its lowest.

  2. Fran Diaz Says:

    More financial mismanagement in the pipelines ?

    MP Bandula Gunawardena said that the Yahap govt is also planning to hand over the EPF-ETF monies to a private agency to invest in the Colombo Stock Exchange !
    Very soon workers can say goodbye to their hard earned savings too ! (See news item in the Daily Mirror on the web, 16 Nov 2015).
    We hope the Labor Unions will stop this added financial madness from Yahap before it is too late.

  3. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    MF HEADLESS CHICKENS. STOCK EXCHANGE IS THE MOST DANGEROUS PLACE TO INVEST. THEY HAVE WHAT ARE CALLED REVERSE SPLITS. IN ONE SHOT ONE CAN LOSE ALL THE MONEY. MY $2700.00 INVESTMENT, IN A REVERSE SPLIT BECAME $52.00. THEY DID ANOTHER REVERSE SPLIT AND MY INVESTMENT BECAME ZERO. THAT WAS THE END OF MY TRADING. CSE WILL SOON LEARN THESE REVERSE SPLITS, FORWARD SPLITS, BACK SPLITS AND ASS SPLITS, AND WILL RAKE IN THE POOR PEOPLES INVESTMENTS. IT WILL BE TOO LATE, IF SOME IDIOT TAKES THE WRONG DECISION. POX ON THESE BUGGERS.

  4. crobe Says:

    What Ravi K did was to allow his buddies to clean their ill gotten/illegal wealth. Perhaps for a fee? This is the same guy who gave Raj Rajaratnam an opportunity to clean his money(for a fee, of course)

  5. Dilrook Says:

    Thank you Fran and Crobe for the relevent information.

    With over $11 billion (close to 1.6 trillion rupees) in assets in total EPF and ETF are one of the largest funds in South Asia. Plundering this hard-earned money of private sector workers must be prevented.

    Interestingly, the budget hole (difference between budgeted expenses and revenue) is close to 1.5 trillion rupees (expenses higher). Government may be planning to use EPF and ETF funds to bridge its budget deficit! An unthinkably foolish and corrupt move. Plunder of the economy has been worst under this government.

  6. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    That was the job karupaiya doing before getting the job of purse strings of Sri Lanka. He has started doing it industrial scale now.
    This yama paachanaya. What elese do you expect?

    We’ve got pathalayin
    we’ve got money launderers
    we’ve got minister of erection (permanent) to do all the construction work at break neck speed.
    We’ve got everything now!
    Thanks h. e. maru sira, pol pot & co. We’ve never been happier!
    What we really lack is a bit of fireworks. Maybe you can arrange that as well in the form of bombs going off all
    over the country like only a few year ago.

  7. Independent Says:

    ‘Bond Scams’ Take Place Even Now:
    Tuesday, 17 November 2015 15:06

    Bond Scams Take Place Even Now: Wasantha Samarasinghe (AUDIO)

    The Convener of ‘Voice Against Corruption’ Wasantha Samarasinghe today stressed that Central Bank bond transaction frauds continued to take place under the new government.

    Speaking with Asian Mirror, he said that the government seemed to be unaware of the danger the country could face in future because of these illegal transactions taking place even at the moment.

    Moreover, the company that belongs to the son-in-law of the Central Bank Governor is buying treasury bonds and selling them to Employer Trust Fund (ETF) back, he said.

    Samarasinghe asserted that due to the more famous ‘bond scam’ occurred through the same company, the interest rates of foreign loans borrowed by Sri Lanka were increased as well.

    “Because of that the interest we should pay back increased about 1 billion,” Samarasinghe told.

    Samarasinghe also said that the resignation of Tilak Marapana cannot bring ‘good-governance’ to the country. The government only try to save its neck by highlighting such incidents, he stressed.

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