Coomaraswamy appointed as chief of central bank in Sri Lanka

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on Saturday said he has appointed former central banker Indrajith Coomaraswamy as the new central bank chief, moving to quell uncertainty after the previous governor declined to seek reappointment.

“After consulting all parties relevant, I appointed Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy to head the Central Bank of Sri Lanka,” President Sirisena said in his twitter feed.

The 66-year old senior economist was a former director of economic affairs at the Commonwealth Secretariat.

He worked at the Central Bank of Sri Lanka since 1973, serving in the economic research, statistics and bank supervision divisions as a staff officer until 1989, before moving to the Commonwealth Secretariat.

Arjuna Mahendran, the former central bank chief since January 2015, ended his term on Thursday amid a corruption investigation. Mahendran, who has denied any wrongdoing, did not respond to telephone calls from Reuters to seek comment.

The central bank is known to frequently intervene in the market to arrest sharp movements in the rupee currency, and the vacancy created after Mahendran declined reappointment raised concerns over a potential leadership vacuum.