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Sri Lanka may buy back Emirates Airline’s stake

altMay 16 - Sri Lanka has offered $55 million to buy back the 43.6 per cent stake that Emirates airline holds in the country’s national carrier SriLankan Airlines. Emirates had indicated earlier this week that it was willing to sell the stake for the right price. "Sri Lanka is going to buy it ... $55 million is the price we have indicated," P.B. Jayasundera, secretary of the finance ministry and the treasury, told journalists.

Emirates has been trying to its stake in SriLankan Airlines since 2008, which had previously been valued at about $150 million and for which it paid $70 million in 1998. This is Emirates’ sole investment in any other airline. "The deal is almost done," Jayasundera said. "We are looking for a strategic partner or somebody from the government to take that (the stake) and maintain the commercial character of SriLankan (Airlines)."

He declined to say whether an arm of the government would take over the stake, or whether it would be sold to an outside partner.



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