agriculture issues in new Sri Lankan book
"Irrigation and Agriculture in Sri Lanka", a book written
and edited by Dr. Ric Shand, an Australian economist and scholar,
was recently launched in Colombo. The book published by the Institute
of Policy Studies - which has contributions from other distinguished
specialists in the field - is a comprehensive study in the development
of irrigation and agriculture in post-independent Sri-Lanka. It
explores in depth the agricultural policies of successive governments
from 1950 to the 1990's, and critically examines the impact investment
in irrigation schemes had on the agricultural sector.
and Agriculture in Sri Lanka" brings together a great deal
of useful information regarding irrigated agriculture and the wide
array of irrigation projects in Sri Lanka. In fact, some important
details contained in the book are not found elsewhere in the literature.
One example is the discussions on the Walagambahu Village Tank Settlement
model, Mutukandiya model, Welioya model Galoya model, and a host
of other projects of this type, an IPS statement said.
The book's nine
chapters analyses in detail the costs and benefits of irrigation,
cost and benefits of rice-based agriculture development, and diversification
and commercialization of agriculture. It then explores options for
future investment in irrigation, and the possibilities of diversifying
the commercial agricultural sector in Sri-Lanka. Shand has published
extensively on development issues, especially on problems relating
to rural poverty and agricultural development, in Asia and the Pacific
over the last thirty-five years.
Challenges and opportunities for
New Delhi - A recent study by the World Bank suggests that
India Post is particularly well positioned to address the pressures
of a changing environment by expanding and reinventing the services
and products it offers, while building on its already impressive
countrywide network infrastructure. New market demands, liberalization
and innovative technologies are impacting the postal industry all
over the world.
environment presents enormous challenges for traditional postal
businesses, but it also creates a vast array of new business opportunities.
Postal organizations are adapting to these challenges by diversifying
product portfolios and expanding services into non-traditional areas
such as e-banking, e-government and e-commerce. The World Bank study
investigates various financial and non-financial services in order
to present an overview of possibilities to India Post. Some of the
case studies look at experiences undertaken by postal services in
the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong
Kong, among others.
India Post is
well positioned to improve and expand its communications through
the use of information technology, with support for physical delivery
and facilitation of financial transactions. India Post is already
a major player in the banking sector through the Post Office Savings
Bank, which handles over 110 million money orders a year, and holds
approximately $44 billion in savings accounts.
Post's network is one of the best and quickest ways to take technology
and its benefits to the rural population in India. Across India
154,000 post offices reach the people in an intense and intimate
network of knowledge and service. No Indian is more than roughly
a mile or so from the nearest post office and 137,000 of them are
in rural areas. Beyond that, the last mile is traversed by the postman
on the bicycle," said Mieko Nishimizu, president for the South
Asia Region at the World Bank. She was speaking at a conference
to discuss the report held in New Delhi on November 12 and 13. "You
can think of India Post now as an old fashioned network trapped
in the bricks and mortar of a dying mail service.
Or you can think
of India Post as an extraordinary human network that facilitates
incredible access to virtually all Indians. Imagine the development
potential of such a network with such access to people."
The study also
highlights the social and economic functions of the postal service.
This is particularly true in the developing world where a reliable
postal system is a critical component of the modern information
and distribution infrastructure. In addition, the study suggests
that any reform of the postal service looks for opportunities to
leverage its extraordinary network to become more competitive in
a challenging market environment by considering alternative business
models with a stronger private sector orientation. (World Bank newsletter)
presentation to future ambassadors
of Investment team conducted a presentation at the Foreign Ministry's
Institute for International Relations to 25 ambassador designates
selected by the government to head Sri Lankan diplomatic missions
These diplomats, prior to their posting overseas, are being briefed
on a wide range of international issues at sessions organized by
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a BOI statement said.
included a description of the BOI and its role in promoting foreign
direct investment into Sri Lanka. The purpose of this presentation
was to convey to the ambassadors the crucial role they will play
in the promotion of investment into the country. Since economic
growth offers the prospects of more investment, higher employment
and greater prosperity, diplomatic missions of most nation states
have seen their role in economic affairs grow in importance.
The BOI team
consisted of Vidharshan Fernando, Additional Director (Promotion),
Sumedha de Silva, Director (Secretariat), Dilip S.Samarasinghe,
Director (Media) and Mohamed Hameez, Management Assistant.
Times makes life more entertaining
Leisure Times (LT), a monthly entertainment magazine showcasing
Colombo's entertainment scene and city events, was launched recently.
The magazine is packed with listings, which will help readers to
plan their leisure time activities more conveniently.
It also includes
thought provoking features on entertainment, LT Publisher Rasika
Jayawardena said at the launch. He said the magazine caters to both
locals and foreigners and will be distributed on SriLankan Airlines.
It would be distributed free for three months.
LT Editor Deshan
Tennekoon said they hoped to print 50,000 copies per month, with
an Internet issue in the future with plans to increase the number
of copies for circulation in major cities in the country.
has features by Reggie Candappa, considered the godfather of advertising
in Sri Lanka, on nightlife in the 19402, cricketer Aravinda de Silva
talking about cricket and his son named Sampras, writer Richard
Simon who ponders as to where the girls in Colombo city have gone,
and Leah Marikkar who talks to restaurateur Kollu on his travels
to Portugal, owning a bar and setting new trends in the restaurant
business in Colombo. (HS)