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Sri Lanka sharply raises fuel prices under IMF pressure

Sri Lanka hiked fuel prices Thursday by up to 130 per cent following pressure from the International Monetary Fund and its central bank to reduce the burden of heavy subsidies on its struggling economy. The price of kerosene oil, widely used in rural Sri Lanka for cooking and in lamps, will be more than doubled — from 44 rupees to 101 rupees (Dh2.35, $0.65) per litre starting midnight Thursday, the government said. This is the first fuel price increase in Sri Lanka since the ruling coalition came to power in 2015. Past fuel subsidy cuts sparked protests in the South Asian nation, but it is unclear how the public will react to the latest hike. Sri Lanka had to secure a $1.5-billion (Dh5.5-billion) IMF bailout two years ago after a balance of payments crisis, and has struggled to limit huge losses at the state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corporation, the country’s biggest oil company.

Source: Gulf News

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