McDonald’s stores close in Sri Lanka after deal with partner ended, lawyer says By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A McDonald’s sign is seen in Nice, southern France, March 8, 2016. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

By Uditha Jayasinghe

COLOMBO (Reuters) – McDonald’s (NYSE: ) has terminated its partnership with its Sri Lankan partner and all 12 locations in the country will be closed, a lawyer for the U.S. company said on Sunday.

“The parent company has decided to terminate the contract with the lender due to difficulties,” said Sanath Wijewardane, a lawyer for McDonald’s. “They are not in business in this country. They may choose to come back with a new lender.”

He said the contract was terminated on Wednesday but the shops continued to operate for several days.

A spokesman for its local partner, Abans, declined to comment.

Wijewardane declined to comment on the matter but local media reported that McDonald’s had gone to court against Abans over cleanliness.

Abans says on its website that it first partnered with McDonald’s in 1998.

Sri Lanka, an Indian Ocean island of 22 million people, is recovering from a severe economic crisis.

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