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Touchwood’s bogus address cons CSE, investors

Touchwood’s bogus address cons CSE, investors

The Touchwood company crisis has spread outside the shores of Sri Lanka with investors in Thailand suing the company there while in Colombo an attempt to deceive investors has been bared in a Business Times (BT) investigation. The ‘new’ address of the Touchwood Lanka office as intimated to the Colombo Stock Exchange on February 28 [...]

Attempt to acquire a finance company using Mahapola funds revealed

Financial misappropriation and irregularities allegedly committed in thesetting up of a private company called National Wealth Corporation Ltd in 2003 to manage the funds of Mahapola Scholarship Trust Fund came to light again following a new move of this company to a acquire a finance or leasing company adopting a similar tactic after almost 10 [...]

Electric bikes seen replacing bicycles

Electric bikes could replace bicycles, the popular mode of transport of the common man, with the entry of automotive companies committed for environmental conservation. E lanka Automotive Pvt Ltd has stepped in to sell a range of electric bikes as Sri Lanka’s future automobile sector is seen shifting towards a green-focused market. The company plans [...]

Dilmah launches tea capsules in selected markets

Dilmah, Sri Lanka’s best known international tea brand, is not short of innovative ways to adjust to new consumer trends in overseas markets. Its latest product – the Dilmah tea capsule introduced last year in Australia, has drawn a lot of popularity in New Zealand where it was introduced this month. Available in popular Earl [...]

Nationalism, abuse and security risks alarm British, Australian travellers

A rise in nationalism and unsafe environment for women and children in addition to financial crises in investments made in Colombo have raised alarms on whether Sri Lanka has become safe as a destination to visit. These concerns were brought to light through the UK and Australian travel advisories issued recently. The tourism industry that [...]

Real estate market segment: Middle income

Current trends Due to a variety of economic and social factors, the main focus for the middle income segment is in the arena of newly built houses and plots of land. This segment of the market tends to diverge into the suburbs of Colombo city, opting for larger properties 20-30 km away from the city. [...]

Tokyo Power opens new Biomass Plant in Mahiyanganaya

The Tokyo Cement Group recently opened its second Biomass power plant to supply the largely rural region of Mahiyanganaya with 5MW of energy. This Rs. 2.4 billion plant by Tokyo Power, the energy arm of the nation’s leading cement and concrete manufacturer, Tokyo Cement Group, is an initiative to build on its expertise in sustainable [...]

SLT collaborates with UGC and University of Colombo on new degree programmes

SLT Human Capital Solutions (SLT HCS), a fully owned subsidiary of Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) together with the University Grants Commission (UGC), and the University of Colombo (UoC), recently signed a tri-party Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), to offer modern degree programmes in the field of Technology and Engineering. The initiative helps expand the much needed [...]

Upcoming second plunder of Golden Key depositors

About eight years ago I returned to Sri Lanka after a stint of several years abroad working in top firms as an international consultant. I brought back with me considerable financial assets and after purchasing some high value beautiful property in Colombo and outstation and two nice luxury vehicles I invested over Rs. 20 million [...]

Societal response to deceit, cheating and thievery

Over the past several months, the Business Times and its parent, the Sunday Times have carried dozens of letters and pleas from readers (cum investors) on how they have been fleeced by so-called finance and forestry management companies. Unable to move the authorities to firmly track down the culprits, the public reliance on the print [...]

Falling interest rates, dilemma of senior citizens

This refers to the letter from the Kohuwela senior citizen appearing in last week’s BT on the above subject requesting Mr. President to do something. The banking sector continues to make record profits, this time Rs. 74.6 billion for 2013, while senior citizens continue to complain of falling interest rates. Nothing seems to be happening [...]

Golden Key directors duping others?

Golden Key directors duping others?

It appears that the poor traumatised depositors of the defunct Golden Key Co (GK) who were defrauded by its former chairman Lalith Kotelawala and his minions once before are to be let down again. Two weeks ago when the newspapers were full of the story that Kotelawela’s secret shares of 50 per cent in Ciesot [...]

Bairaha Farms in new Rs. 1.65 bln animal feed

Bairaha Farms Plc (BFP) is collaborating in a new project to set up a large scale, state- of- the- art commercial animal feed manufacturing factory together with raw materials procurement and modern post-harvest storage facilities. In a statement to the Colombo Stock Exchange, the company said the joint-venture known as Fortune Agro Industries (Pvt) Ltd [...]

Employees must be represented in the management of their own provident fund, Harsha says

While calling for drastic reforms in the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), UNP Parliamentarian and economist Harsha de Silva has urged the need for representatives of employees to be involved in the management of the fund. “The time has come for drastic reform in the way the EPF is managed to ensure that the pension fund [...]

Cargills helps rural communities with scholarships, farmer support

Cargills helps rural communities with scholarships, farmer support

Cargills (Ceylon) PLC, as part of its annual Community Development Programme (Rural) recently distributed Rs 1.2 million worth of scholarships and other benefits to the Boralanda farmer community. According to a media release by Cargills, the largest beneficiaries were the smallholder farmers in the region with a land extent less than an acre. Accordingly, scholarships [...]

Government’s tax hike policy on vehicle imports pays dividends

The government’s policy of increasing taxes on the importation of vehicles from time to time has paid dividends last year as it brought revenue of Rs. 96.5 billion, Finance Ministry sources said. This was an increase of 22.9 per cent comparing to excise duty revenue from vehicle imports in 2012, a senior official of the [...]

New motor magazine copy handed over to the President

New motor magazine copy  handed over to the President

The Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka recently launched the first ever Sinhala Motor Mag named “Lak Riya”. Its President Sampath Merenchige handed over the first copy of the magazine to President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Carlton, Tangalle recently. Also in the picture are other office bearers of the association.

United Motors to produce three new Chinese Zotye Automobiles

United Motors Lanka PLC is expanding its assembly of Chinese Zotye Automobiles with a plan to introduce three new models including a sport utility vehicle (SUV) soon, a top official of the company said. Chanaka Yatawara, CEO/Executive Director of United Motors, told the Business Times that the vehicle assembly operation was undertaken by a subsidiary [...]

Toyota Lanka unveils next generation line up of eight vehicles

Toyota Lanka unveils next generation line up of eight vehicles

Toyota Lanka has pulled the wraps off the next generation line up of eight vehicles along with two concept cars TOYOTA FT 86 Open and NS4 at a glittering event in Colombo anticipating a new boom in the car market with a reduction in import duty in the near future. Manohara Athukorala, Chief Operating Officer [...]

Only 6 franchise dealers get car market monopoly, say used motor car dealers

With used car sales slumping due to the removal of depreciation value concession under the 2014 budget proposal, Sri Lankan used car dealers are going out of business at an accelerating pace, a leading motoring company head revealed. The tax on the import of a vehicle used between six months to a year will be [...]

Tata Motors and DIMO seek greater share of SL’s new car market

Tata Motors together with Diesel and Motor Engineering PLC (DIMO) is aiming for a significant share of the new car market in Sri Lanka through the stylish e-XETA, a top official of the company revealed.. Unveiling the new e-XETA in Colombo recently Pranaw Kumar, Area Manager, Sri Lanka, Tata Motors, said, “Sri Lanka has traditionally [...]

‘Illusory Economy versus the Real Economy’ of Sri Lanka

‘Illusory Economy versus the Real Economy’ of Sri Lanka

The Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has penned a compelling article entitled “Practical, not Conventional, Wisdom has driven Sri Lanka’s Rebuilding and Reconciliation” which was posted on the official website of the CBSL on Thursday, April 3rd and abruptly removed on Monday, 7th April 2014 for reasons best known to CBSL. [...]

Colombo beautification at a cost of 135,000 families : CPA

Colombo beautification at a cost of 135,000 families : CPA

As many as 135,000 Colombo families, or 500,000 persons, could be forcibly evicted by Sri Lankan authorities, prompted by the country’s Urban Development Authority (UDA), according to a recent report by the Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA), which cited official estimates as its source for these numbers. Further, a media statement released by the CPA [...]

Commercial Bank partners EIB credit line

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon has entered into an agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB) to finance Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), Energy Efficiency (EE) and Renewable Energy (RE) projects under the EIB SME Green Energy Credit Line extened to the Government of Sri Lanka. The minimum project size eligible for SME financing will [...]

At least 10 financial institutions ready to merge

At least 10 banks and finance and leasing companies (NBFIs) have finalised plans to merge or acquire counterparts under the Central Bank’s financial sector consolidation initiative, official sources told Business Times. Without revealing the number of companies, the Central Bank announced this week that several financial institutions have shortlisted potential merger/acquisition counterparts and are carrying [...]

Sri Lankan biz community meets Singapore Foreign Minister

Sri Lankan biz community meets Singapore Foreign Minister

Members of the committee of the Sri Lanka- Singapore Business Council (SLSBC) recently met with visiting K. Shanmugam, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Law of Singapore, at a luncheon meeting in Colombo. The discussion included a broad range of topics pertaining to business between Singapore and Sri Lanka. There has been renewed interest [...]

IDB to be revamped to provide efficient service for industrialists

Sri Lanka’s Industrial Development Board (IDB) is now being revamped to provide efficient service for industrialists, IDB Chairman Nawaz Rajabdeen disclosed. The oganisation will be transformed to a fully-fledged and modernised industrial facilitation agency harnessing maximum contribution and productivity of the qualified staff, he said, adding that foreign scholarships will be offered to senior staff [...]

Massive Cat excavators in Sri Lanka to accelerate port projects

Massive Cat excavators in Sri Lanka to accelerate port projects

With an operating weight of 90MT Cat 390D L Excavators are among the biggest Hydraulic Excavators in the world. UTE achieved a significant milestone recently by securing an order for four 390D L Cat Hydraulic Excavators, which will be used to strengthen the ongoing Hambantota and Colombo South Harbour projects. The machines were handed over [...]

Investors want international warrant on Maloneys

Investors are to appeal to Sri Lankan authorities to issue an international arrest warrant on Touchwood’s former owners Roscoe and Swarna Maloney. They are preparing to file a complaint on these lines with the Criminal Investigation Department by the end of the month, co-ordinator of the Touchwood Stakeholders Association and lawyer Lakshan Dias told the [...]

Sri Lanka Army makes green tests mandatory for its entire vehicle fleet

Sri Lanka Army’s 15,000 vehicle fleet is to constantly undergo vehicle emission testing in line with the government’s green environmental policy, army sources said. These vehicle emission tests will be carried out by LAUGFS Holdings Ltd vehicle emission test centres countrywide, a senior army officer said. The Army vehicle ‘Green Test’ programme was launched at [...]

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