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Cultural tourism in Jaffna

Cultural tourism in Jaffna

The Jaffna Municipal Council earned Rs. 19.2 million with a net profit of Rs. 11.7 million during the popular Nallur temple festival which ended on September 6. The revenue, up by 29.45 per cent from last year, was enhanced by the presence of a large number of devotees including expatriate Tamils. Many tourists also visited [...]

Perpetual Treasuries profit shocks markets

Bond trader Perpetual Treasuries hit the headlines this week, for the third time in 19 months, with a phenomenal post-tax profit of over Rs. 5 billion in the year ending March 2016, far above market trends.  The company – owned by the son-in-law of former Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran – made a killing compared [...]

Economic development zone ends the VOA saga in Sri Lanka

An economic and tourism development zone is to come up at the 410 acre-Voice of America (VOA) broadcasting facility site at Iranawila, which caused a major local and international problem for Sri Lanka during the 1990s, official sources revealed. The US Information Agency has agreed to return the land to the present government even before [...]

Lankan gift teas in China hit by corruption crackdown

High-priced special Ceylon Tea has hit an unusual barrier for the wrong reasons in China: A government crackdown there on civil servants receiving special gifts perceived as corruption and bribery.  Some of these specialty teas retailed at between US$300 – 500 each with high-end packaging were sold in the Chinese market as gift teas ending [...]

B’desh travel ban props SL’s prospects in apparel sector

Britain’s travel ban to Bangladesh owing to the bloody terrorist attack two months ago has seen a flurry of apparel buyers flocking in to Colombo.  “Certain big names in the apparel industry along with foreign (apparel) buying offices in Colombo have been welcoming many British apparel sourcing officials in the past two months and are [...]

‘Onna Babo Billo Enawa”

‘Onna Babo Billo Enawa”

Sitting through a discussion on “Taxes and the Public” organized by the Sunday Times Business Club on Tuesday and listening to how confused Sri Lankans are and fearful of the taxman reminded me of that childhood favourite song ‘Onna Babo Billo Enawa’.  Loosely translated, it means ‘Children, beware of the bogey-man”. The taxman or the [...]

Tax experts prescribe new institutions for Sri Lanka’s ailing tax system

Tax experts prescribe new institutions for Sri Lanka’s ailing tax system

Sri Lankans are currently suffering from a confused mindset: the tax phobia has been widely spreading in the society as a result of the failure to create awareness on complex and complicated taxes by successive governments including the present Yahapalanya which made it worse and complex.  Under the status of confusion now, no one likes [...]

Sri Lanka leapfrogs to a digital Government, says Telecom Minister

Sri Lanka steps into a major socio-economic reform via digital transformation next year ensuring that right skills and resources are available for the public sector with Information Technology (IT) as a key component in this push, Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure Minister Harin Fernando announced in Colombo on Tuesday.  The government will be assisting the public [...]

LAUGFS moves headquarters to 101 Maya Avenue, Colombo

LAUGFS moves headquarters to 101 Maya Avenue, Colombo

LAUGFS Holdings recently announced the shifting of its corporate head office to an advanced state-of-the-art building complex in a landmark location at 101 Maya Avenue in Colombo 6.  The move to shift to this exclusive and iconic property coincides with LAUGFS’ 21st anniversary this year, according to a company media release.  The group has expanded [...]

Seven nights in your own Maldivian resort for $6 mln

Want to own a resort island with 78 rooms for seven nights at US$6.25 million? This is what W Maldives, a luxury resort in the Maldives, is offering to its guests under a buyout package called “Extreme Island Takeover”, transforming an island into your own private playground.  The package starts from $4 million for four [...]

Hayleys opts for oil rig hub business

Hayleys opts for oil rig hub business

KATUNAYAKE – Hayleys Energy Services has begun to explore opportunities in diversifying within the oil and gas industry by locating an oil rig at the tax free Advantis Free Zone at Katunayake, the first of two more in the pipeline.  Since the country is in a logistically viable position, Hayleys has provided the logistics for [...]

MAS transforms sludge to usable bricks

MAS transforms sludge to usable bricks

Companies that depend on water for their operations such as MAS Holdings also recognise that the responsible use of water is a key business issue.  ”As a key consumer of dyes and colours, the apparel and fabrics industry also uses significant amounts of water while using these products to process its yarn and fabrics,” the [...]

Lotteries board says ‘fake tickets’ not ‘ours’

Lotteries board says ‘fake tickets’ not ‘ours’

Not surprisingly, the National Lotteries Board (NLB) this week showed its true colours taking umbrage to the Business Times Page 1 picture last week captioned “Sweep ticket fraud’ about a fake ticket being sold in Pettah. (Also reproduced here)  In a letter to the newspaper, the NLB chairperson Shyamila Perera said “we wish to inform [...]

Sri Lanka media lacks pre-disaster reporting skills

The Rathupaswala protests over a drinking water pollution crisis in which three persons including two students were shot dead in Army shooting could have been preempted if there was early reporting by the media on the issues, research has shown.  The above comment was made by Prof. Lakshman R. Piyadasa, Head, Dept of Mass Communication, [...]

Doctors: Uphold cherished standards and dignity of noble profession, UGC chair says

Uphold the cherished standards and dignity of the noble profession of a medical doctor as the whole world is watching you. This was the advice given to medical undergraduates of the Kelaniya University Medical Faculty by Prof. Mohan de Silva, Chairman, University Grants Commission (UGC) when he declared open the MedKel 2016 Medical Exhibition organised [...]

Colombo to host region’s Internet experts at APNIC 42 conference

Over 200 local and international Internet specialists will converge in Colombo on October 3-5 for the APNIC 42 Conference at the Hilton Colombo.  The conference is one of the Asia Pacific’s most important Internet events and is supported by local hosts Sri Lanka CERT|CC, as well as ICTA, LEARN, and CSSL, according to local organisers. [...]

Real estate seen as preferred investment for Sri Lankans – survey

A majority of Sri Lankans prefer to invest in real estate as opposed to the stock market or bank savings, according to a joint survey conducted by and the Real-estate Intelligence Unit (RIU).  In one of the most detailed ground surveys carried out about the Sri Lankan real estate sector, 44.1 per cent of [...]

‘Kelani Shakthi’ energising Jaffna youth bestows certificates to first batch of students

‘Kelani Shakthi’ energising Jaffna youth bestows certificates to first batch of students

Kelani Cables PLC, in a bid to groom youth in the Jaffna peninsula as electrical technicians, has launched ‘Kelani Shakthi’, a one-year professional development programme.  The first batch of students on completing of this training programme received their certificates at a function held at the Jaffna University Engineering Faculty in Kilinochchi.  The occasion was graced [...]

SEC says probes getting ‘interesting’ amidst global training conference here

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) says that their probes against insider dealing and market manipulation – some of which are slated to be completed in three months – are increasingly becoming ‘interesting’.  While they didn’t let on in any details, informed sources told the Business Times that now there’re many twists and turns in [...]

CSE getting ready for a transformational change

CSE getting ready for  a transformational change

Investor participation in CSE is very low these days. Despite more than 750,000 accounts at the CDS, many of these are duplicates or dormant. In total, it is estimated that only about 25,000 accounts trade actively. It is a vicious cycle, as low participation makes the market less attractive to investors, leading to yet less [...]

Lanka Walltiles to see a capacity increase

Lanka Walltiles to see a capacity increase

A capacity increase is scheduled for Lanka Walltiles PLC (Walltiles) in 2027 targeting the manufacture of larger format tiles, given the higher demand and margins for such products locally and internationally.  “We want to capitalise on this as there’s a big demand for larger tiles,” a LWL official said.  Parquet, the tile grout and mortar [...]

SL’s first large scale solar power plant by LOLC

SL’s first large scale solar  power plant by LOLC

A 10 MW solar power plant spanning 40 acres at Hambantota is to be commissioned this month by LOLC.  Officials told the Business Times that through Saga Solar, an LOLC subsidiary, this US$ 20 million is set to provide valuable support to the country’s national grid. LOLC has 51 per cent in Saga Solar with [...]

Citrus announces strategic corporate restructure

The Citrus Group of Companies owning the new Sri Lankan leisure brand ‘Citrus’ announced in a statement this week of an overall strategic restructuring plan of its group subject to relevant regulatory approvals, shareholder approvals and conditions.  This entails Hikkaduwa Beach Resort PLC (CITH) making a voluntary offer to shareholders of Waskaduwa Beach Resort PLC [...]

CPC’s lubricant blending plant may not be ‘country -friendly’

The recent announcement of Hyrax Oil signing an agreement with the state-owned Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) to establish a 4 million-litre (per month) lubricant blending plant in the country has raised questions in the industry.  Industry analysts say that last budget’s reduction in the duty gap between raw materials and finished goods of lubricants from [...]

Cable industry’s highs to spur construction surge – analysts

The government decision to resume work on many of the suspended projects and launch a few new large-scale developments in 2016 will boost demand for the cable industry, industry analysts said.  Growth in housing construction due to rapid investment worth US$ 1.8 billion has been signed during the period January to June this year, covering [...]

New Age CEOs are bound to take risks despite failures, says JKH Deputy Chairman

New Age CEOs are bound to  take risks despite failures, says JKH Deputy Chairman

‘Look before you leap’, one of the famous idioms elders used to advise the young people at a point when they try to take decisions on their own. Today with technological advancement and the world moving forward there is no time to look, but to take big risks and leap.  Company Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) [...]

Have fun with a Rolex on your arm

Have fun with a Rolex on your arm

There were no strawberries and cream, only sushi and virgin mojitos. Yes, it wasn’t Wimbledon but even Roger Federer would not have been out of place at Chatham Luxury, the exclusive boutique shop in Colombo which had transformed itself into a home for Rolex timepieces recently.  Chatham, an outlet owned by the Hirdaramani Group which [...]

Daily commuting is a major productivity drain, Regus survey shows

Daily commuting  is a major productivity drain, Regus survey shows

Latest research from flexible workspace provider Regus shows that business people globally regard their daily trip into and out of the office as a drain on productivity. This ‘limbo’ of time that is mainly seen as neither productive work time, nor enjoyable personal time is widely regarded as an obstacle to more useful or entertaining [...]

World focused on SL: Last year 23 leaders visited the country

Sri Lanka is to be made into a regional hub by aligning with neighbouring countries and by utilising the maritime route to develop trade, said the Minister of Finance Ravi Karunanayake the Chief Guest at the Global Shapers hub 2016 held at the Cinnamon Lakeside hotel in Colombo last week.  He said the country is [...]

ESET launches mobile security solution in Sri Lanka

ESET, a global pioneer in proactive protection for more than two decades, has launched ESET Mobile Security, a comprehensive data protection solution for mobiles phones, in Sri Lanka.  Combining the robust detection of ESET’s scanning engine with advanced antispam and antitheft functionality, its multiple layers of security provide smartphone users with real-time protection on the [...]

SENKADAGALAPURA – re-developing the once glorious Kandyan Kingdom

SENKADAGALAPURA – re-developing the once glorious Kandyan Kingdom

Senkadagalapura was a glorious capital of Sinhalé (Ceylon) in a bygone era, until encroachment of its boundaries by Colonial rulers and subsequent “development” made inroads in to the city. Now the cultural heritage sites and environmentally rich surroundings are dwarfed by “development”.  Agriculturally, environmentally, climatically, aesthetically and in every other way possible, “Maha Nuwara” or [...]

Indo-Lanka ‘powwow’ on trade pact

The Sri Lankan government, seen as bowing to pressure from different stakeholders, is now considering scrapping the controversial foreign labour import clause from the Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA) with India. International Trade and Development Minister Malik Samarawickrama speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the media briefing held in Colombo on Tuesday along [...]

CIFL fraud suspect seeks HRC intervention

Deepthi Perera alias Chulaka Gunawardene, accused of fraud in the failed Central Investment and Finance Ltd (CIFL), has petitioned the Human Rights Commission (HRC) seeking relief on what is believed to be over ‘illegal arrest’.  Asked to comment, Mr. Perera, a former CEO of CIFL, confirmed that he had petitioned the HRC but declined to [...]

Cinnamon Life launches second residential tower ‘The Suites at Cinnamon Life’

Cinnamon Life launches second residential tower ‘The Suites at Cinnamon Life’

Sri Lanka’s most iconic mixed development project, Cinnamon Life, this week announced the launch of ‘The Suites at Cinnamon Life’, the second residential tower to be constructed as part of a 4.5 million square foot integrated resort by Waterfront Properties (Pvt) Ltd, a member of the John Keells Group.  “At the time of launch, pre-bookings [...]

K & D Management Services felicitates its ‘high flyers’

K and D Management Services Pvt Ltd, the country’s leading debt recovery company, recently celebrated its 10th anniversary by hosting a gala event and an award ceremony at the Jaic Hilton.  The company also felicitated its top performing staff members at the event, according to a company media release. Chaminda Jayawardana General Manager – Recoveries [...]

‘Veta’, a mobile App to inform users of diseases in your location

While in recent times Sri Lanka has been on red alert over diseases such as Dengue, Chikungunya and Zika with widespread public warnings, a new mobile app called ‘Veta’ has been created that informs people about the diseases reported within a specific radius of the location of any mobile phone that is in use.  App [...]

SC refuses leave to proceed in Entrust FR case

The Supreme Court on Tuesday refused leave to proceed in a Fundamental Rights application by C.N.S. Mendis – a depositor of Entrust Securities – against the Central Bank (CB) to perform its duties and responsibilities by properly supervising this finance company to safeguard the investments of the petitioner.  Counsel for the petitioner submitted to Court [...]

CB adopts best practices to stop loose talk

The Central Bank (CB) in a progressive move is gearing to enforce precautionary measures to jam information leakages on rate decisions in a bid to stop ‘alleged’ insider dealing.  Central Bank Governor Indrajit Coomaraswamy told the media at CB’s monthly policy meeting that the regulator henceforth will hold monetary policy meetings in which rate decisions [...]

24,000 rural youth entrepreneurs to overcome rural economic challenges

24,000 rural youth entrepreneurs to overcome rural economic challenges

With rural Sri Lanka facing mounting challenges in development, the government is now planning to promote 24,000 youth entrepreneurships in all districts as a vehicle for economic growth and development in the country, a senior cabinet minister said.  1,000 youths with innovative thinking and skills in each district are to be given training and financial [...]

SLAASMB wants Agalawatte’s 2014 accounts re-audited

The Agalawatte Plantations PLC (Agalawatte) share sale drama has taken a fresh and more intriguing turn with Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards Monitoring Board (SLAASMB) ordering Agalawatte to re-audit its 2014 accounts and circulate it to all parties who got that year’s annual report.  This directive which was published on the Colombo Stock Exchange’s [...]

Batticaloa has not achieved the expected development, even after the war- Minister Sujeewa

Batticaloa despite its ideal geographical location and natural resources has not achieved any significant development in the past decades, according to Sujeewa Senasinghe, State Minister of International Trade, speaking at an investment and export summit in Batticaloa on Monday.  It was organized with the collaboration of the Ministry of Developmental strategies and the International Trade [...]

SriLankan Airlines commences services to Lahore

SriLankan Airlines began flights to Lahore on September 27, enhancing the airline’s focus on the Asia/Middle East region. In a media release, Ajith Dias, Chairman of SriLankan Airlines, said: “This is an important step in our strategy of increasing our focus on Asia, from the Middle East in the west to China and Japan in [...]

20th anniversary of CEB Pensioners’ Benefit Association on Oct 9

The 20th Anniversary of CEB Pensioners’ Benefit Association (CEBPBA) will be held at Royal College Navarangahala on October 9th.  Its President – Eng. D.G.C. Rathnapala has invited Minister of Power and Renewable Energy Ranjith Siyambalapitiya, Minister of Megapolis and Western Province Development Patali Champika Ranavaka and Deputy Minister of Power and Renewable Energy Ajith P [...]

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