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Future face of Sri Lanka’s construction workers

Future face of Sri Lanka’s construction workers

A group of Chinese workers take a break at a construction site in Colombo. The local construction industry is urging the authorities to allow large-scale import of foreign labour due to a shortage of local workers connected to Sri Lanka’s booming construction sector. On the other hand the government is also promising a million new [...]

Swiss help sought to ferret out black money

Sri Lanka is planning to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Switzerland in a major step towards tackling black money stashed in Swiss banks by Sri Lankan nationals and used for criminal activity. The proposed cooperation will include Swiss authorities providing information on Sri Lankans stashing illegal funds, official sources said. This week, [...]

Trendsetter Ajai unveils fashion industry’s eco system

Sri Lanka’s fashion industry will unveil the new order to manufacture and design garments in an eco-friendly system. As a head start, founder of the Colombo Fashion Week Ajai Vir Singh told the Business Times on Tuesday that they will be showcasing garments uniquely “green conscious and earth sensitive” at the Colombo Swim Week from [...]

Cargills Bank forges ahead with bankable model

Cargills may be new to the world of banking but it’s already a winner, using its own large network of Food City outlets, rather than opening several new bank branches. Through this an unconventional banking model that relies on Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) style, the bank aims to drive business through over 300 Cargills [...]

Emirates gets green light for more daily frequencies

Emirates has been given approval by the Sri Lankan government to increase frequencies between Dubai and Colombo to seven per day from a current five. The new flights will be effective from July 28 on a temporary operating permit basis on condition that Sri Lankan Airlines will be allowed a second, daily flight to Dubai, [...]

Fishing in troubled waters

Fishing in troubled waters

Remember the quote ‘water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink’. This became a reality when Sri Lanka faced a peculiar situation recently in which the western and central areas had never-ending rain and heavy flooding, while the north faced an acute shortage of water for drinking and agriculture. These thoughts crossed my mind [...]

Losing “Ceylon” for a few pennies more? Nay!

Losing “Ceylon” for a few  pennies more? Nay!

The report on the blending of teas in Sri Lanka has left committee members with a lack of consensus on the issue as a result of which no new policy has been formulated for the blending, packaging and re-export of orthodox teas from a country unique to Ceylon Tea. “It was clear from the outset [...]

High level probe into Central Expressway Phase III tender

In a dramatic turn of events, a high level investigation will get underway into the Central Expressway Phase III tender on the directions of the Prime Minister following concerns expressed by the Japanese government. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe intervened and instructed the Road Development Authority (RDA) to investigate as to how the “highest” bidder of [...]

Pottery showroom at Koularagama Co-op site

Pottery showroom at Koularagama Co-op site

A collective of determined women from the Koularagama Industrial Co-operative Society from the same village near the Udawalawe National Park, achieved another milestone and a well-deserved boost with the opening of their very own sales showroom alongside their workshop. This group of skilled and hard-working artisans who create some exquisite pottery and ceramic products drawing [...]

Sri Lanka retail industry launches Retailers’ Academy

The Retail Leadership Excellence Programme conducted by the Sri Lanka Retailers Association (SLRA) held recently was the very first retail learning workshop that was organised by the association. This workshop saw more than 40 executive and middle level employees learning of managing retail business effectively, developing leadership skills, effective communication, operational excellence, customer care skills [...]

Odel ties up with Aban’s Colombo City Centre for more outlets

Luxury buying and increasing affluence of the middle class has resulted in retail chain Odel expanding its outlets at the under-construction Colombo City Centre owned by Abans Group. Odel PLC, owned by Softlogic, said in a Colombo Stock Exchange notice on Monday that the company and its subsidiary, Softlogic Brands (Pvt) Ltd plans to occupy [...]

HSBC’s take on the Belt and Road Initiative

Back in 2014, when HSBC first started writing about China’s plan to build a New Silk Road along the centuries-old trading routes, it was little more than a bold idea. Three years on, what has generally come to be known as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), is being billed by President Xi Jinping as [...]

INSEE Cement’s Ruhunu Cement Plant marks 50 years

INSEE Cement’s Ruhunu Cement Plant marks 50 years

As a schoolboy, K. R. Piyasena De Silva remembers the Ruhunu Cement Plant in Galle, which celebrates its golden jubilee, during its construction stage. Now retired after working at the plant  since 1971, he says, “I have been able to learn a lot in there, having served under many efficient managers; I consider it an [...]

Rajagiriya flyover construction expedited to ease heavy traffic congestion

Construction of the Rajagiriya flyover is to be expedited with the aim of finishing it in double quick time to ease the heavy traffic congestion at the Rajagiriya junction along Sri Jayawardenapura Mawatha. National Policy and Economic Development Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva who paid an inspection visit to the construction area on Tuesday [...]

Smart cities and imaginative construction processes

The second Building Specifiers Conference 2017 held in Colombo this week which discussed the importance of building specifications, also appeared to have become a forum to “agree to disagree” as some participants proposed that architects are dreamers while others said they are not dreamers but scientists. Dishan Ferdinando, Managing Director, Access Eco Engineering, moderating a [...]

Brandix i3 name changes to Fortude

Enterprise technology solutions provider Brandix i3 has announced the change of its name to Fortude. It also launched its new website and rebranded its office at Kynsey Road, Colombo 7. The name change re-positions the company as an independent brand in the IT industry. However, the company will remain a fully-owned subsidiary of the [...]

Co-op Rural Banks (CRBs), the forgotten giant of micro finance

Co-op Rural Banks (CRBs), the forgotten giant of micro finance

As at September 30, 2016, CRBs had Rs.99.7 billion as deposits with 9.5 million accounts in 2,221 branches in all districts of the island. This works out to an average of Rs.10,421 per account. The total loans outstanding as at the same date was Rs.46.7 billion reflecting an average loan of Rs.90,000. A study done [...]

Private sector backs dengue-control campaign

With the number of dengue-affected people expected to rise, the private sector has stepped in to support government efforts to contain the virus. In a media release, Dinesh Weerakkody, Director of the National Health Development Fund, the coordinator of this project, said that this is an initiative of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Health Minister [...]

More concessions for public official vehicle permits

More concessions for public official vehicle permits

Sri Lanka’s senior state sector executive officials have been given more concessions with effect from June 1 under the duty slashed vehicle permit scheme. The Finance Ministry has made several amendments to a trade and investment policy circular providing guidelines and offering more concessions on the import of vehicles for senior executives in management and [...]

Motor trade resurgence after re-adjusting taxes

Motor trade resurgence after re-adjusting taxes

While there is a general view that the tax hike has impacted on Sri Lanka’s motor trade and vehicle imports, the country is beginning to reap benefits of easing traffic congestion in the near future as a result of declining car imports. Given the current grave traffic situation and the massive contribution of the automotive [...]

Mumbai’s adored Padmini taxis near the end of the road

Mumbai’s adored Padmini taxis near the end of the road

MUMBAI, AFP, June 14 – They were named after a legendary Indian queen and were synonymous with Mumbai for half a century but the last Premier Padmini taxis will soon embark on their final journey — to the scrapyard. The compact black-and-yellow cabs, based on an Italian Fiat and often boasting elaborately patterned interiors, were [...]

Uber’s flying taxis in Dubai by 2020

Uber’s flying taxis in Dubai by 2020

Uber recently announced that it is set to launch Uber Elevate, a fleet of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) flying cars that will be used to transport passengers within cities. The company has partnered with the Dubai government aiming to conduct passenger flights during Expo 2020 Dubai. Commuters will have access to this fleet of [...]

Lanka Ashok Leyland records revenue growth

Lanka Ashok Leyland ended another successful financial year ending March 2017 with improved results touching total revenue of Rs. 11.4 billion owing to 4th quarter financial achievement where revenue reached Rs 3.8 billion. Lanka Ashok Leyland’s foray into export markets made significant gains this year which contributed in expanding the gross profit margin to 9 [...]

JLL Sri Lanka says absorption in condos will meet construction in mid term

Double-digit growth in the domestic real estate sector over medium term was projected recently by officials who said that the kind of supply in apartments now being built are larger than what the average rate of absorption is – which is the reason why there seems to be a glut in the high rise sector. [...]

Pensions Dept-Fairfirst Insurance re-launch insurance scheme for pensioners

The Government Pensions Department together with ColomboRe Insurance Brokers and Fairfirst Insurance recently re-launched “Buhuman” – a unique health insurance policy. Initially introduced to the market in 2014, this policy was previously designed and developed by ColomboRe Insurance Brokers. Subsequently modifications to the product were made with the assistance of Fairfirst Insurance, the promoters said [...]

LSEG LiveOps receives ISO 20000 certification

LSEG LiveOps, the specialised team within the London Stock Exchange Group’s (LSEG) recently-established Shared Service Centre (BSL, Sri Lanka) was recently awarded the ISO 20000 certification in recognition of its IT Service Management Excellence. The LSEG LiveOps team are global experts in providing live operational support for business critical applications used in exchanges around the [...]

EFC-Malaysian institute work on competency mapping systems

Organisations today want to have healthier HR practices besides just having laws and by- laws to govern them. As part of healthy HR practices, many organizations have embarked on retaining talent and developing it with the understanding that human resource is the greatest asset of a company, according to Sri Vahlsan, Consultant Trainer from the [...]

Sri Lanka embarks on a mega high speed rail project

Sri Lanka embarks on a mega high speed rail project

Sri Lanka has launched a mega high speed rail and mixed development project introducing the magneticlevitation (maglev) technology through High Speed Railway Corporation Pvt Ltd (HSRC). HSRC has initiated this venture when its equity partner Castlepines Global Equities–Japan Office (CGE) signed an agreement to partner in carrying out this mega project in the country, a [...]

Sri Lankan management book to be published in UK and the US

Sri Lankan management book to be published in UK and the US

Marketing and Business STRATEGY’ authored by Lewie Diasz will be launched on Monday, June 19 at the Sri Lanka Foundation Institute, Independence Square Colombo 7. The author in a media release says it is a first for Sri Lanka since it has been endorsed by eminent global scholars and leading authors from the UK and [...]

MG Group of companies widens its horizons

While Sri Lanka remains strategically placed to benefit from the changing global marketplace, development of economic and social infrastructure is pivotal to unleashing the country’s true potential, says a top local consultancy. With a distinct focus on bringing economic success, serving the increasing infrastructure requirements of the country, the MG Group of Companies (MGG), a [...]

Nestlé to represent SL at ‘Cannes International Festival of Creativity’

Nestlé to represent SL at ‘Cannes International Festival of Creativity’

Nestlé’s Umeshinie Kurukulasuriya and Ashani Ratnayake have won the prestigious Cannes Lions Young Marketer Sri Lanka 2017. The duo competed against teams from leading companies to win the local title, and will represent Sri Lanka in the Young Lions Competition at the 64th Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France, going head-to-head with teams [...]

Sanje Pvt Ltd recognised as 2017 Microsoft Country Partner of the Year

Sanje Pvt Ltd, part of Tech One Sri Lanka, has been picked for the 2017 Microsoft Country Partner of the Year Award from Sri Lanka. The company in a media release said it was honoured among a global field of top Microsoft partners for demonstrating excellence in innovation and implementation of customer solutions based on [...]

SEC to decide fate of errant firms in public float by month end

Timelines to enforce new directions on listed company public float is fast approaching with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) meeting next week to decide on the fate of errant firms, informed sources said. The Colombo Stock Exchange’s (CSE) timeline to issue directions on non-compliance is end June. The Commission is to decide the penalties [...]

Govt. approves 2500 construction workers from Nepal, Myanmar

Govt. approves 2500 construction  workers from Nepal, Myanmar

Sri Lanka’s rapid expansion of construction in several economic sectors now impact millions of people in terms of employment and income. Its corresponding relevance to the country’s economy is the contribution to the GDP, directly and indirectly. Consequently, the Chamber of Construction Industry (CCI) regularly raises its concerns on the key issues which can sustain [...]

Advantis Projects bridges logistics gap in Sri Lanka’s energy growth

Advantis Projects bridges logistics gap in Sri Lanka’s energy growth

A major hurdle in the construction of power plants in developing countries like Sri Lanka has been the installation of the large, heavy generators that produce the electricity in a power plant. In a media release, Advantis Projects (formally known as Logiventures Pvt Ltd), a subsidiary of the Hayleys Group, said that it has the [...]

IronOne Lakmini Wijesundera in EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme

IronOne Lakmini Wijesundera in EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women programme

IronOne Technologies and BoardPAC Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Lakmini Wijesundera was chosen by Ernst and Young (EY), a global professional services company, to be included in the prestigious EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women (EWW) Asia-Pacific programme 2017 as a top women entrepreneur in the region. Participants of this year’s programme convened for the first time [...]

Stealing from the ‘Savings of the Elders’

Cash deposited at The Standard Credit Finance Ltd, a company registered with the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, has been misappropriated by its former directorates on a large scale. In terms of the reports of the Auditors, absolute corrupt practices were adopted since 2008/9, by the company, headed by the then Chairman Sanka R. Wijesinghe [...]

Proposals for inland ferry service in Colombo city

The Government is planning to call for tenders to operate an inland ferry service within Colombo and the outskirts. The service along the Wellawatte-Battaramulla canal is expected to be operational in early 2018 while the Beira Lake ferry is to be operational in the same year. According to an announcement on Friday, the Sri Lanka [...]

Mastercard supports WFP’s flood relief efforts

Mastercard supports WFP’s flood relief efforts

Mastercard recently announced that it has partnered with the United Nations World Food Programme’s (WFP) flood relief efforts in Sri Lanka. Silvio Barzi, Independent Director, Mastercard Inc, handed over a donation from the company to WFP Deputy Country Director NguyenDuc Hoang recently. The WFP is supporting the flood relief efforts with the Government of Sri [...]

Second professional training/tripadvisor management course by Arden Institute

Arden Institute, the educational partner of American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) in Sri Lanka – following the successful launch programme of CGSP last year will host another Certified Guest Service ProfessionalR (CGSPR) Workshop on June 29 at the Royal Colombo Golf Club for the benefit of the hospitality professionals. “With several certified CGSPs [...]

Merry-go-round at Lanka Hospitals

Another director who resigned earlier at Lanka Hospitals was this week reappointed in a bizarre and unexplained turn of events at the directorate of the hospital company. On Friday, the company said Nandana Jayantha Munasinghe was appointed to the board as an independent, non-executive director. The announcement failed to mention that he was a director [...]

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