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Innovation and sustainability name of the game

Innovation and sustainability name of the game

Sustainability combined with innovation, in whatever business you are in, will be the name of the game in 2018. In the tourism business this is also linked to the environment. Instead of featuring the usual Christmassy-picture in this issue, which readers would most likely expect, the Business Times has opted for this stand-out feature at [...]

SLT now operates under an executive committee

The Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) management has temporarily being brought under an executive committee following the resignation of Group CEO Dileepa Wijesundera last week amidst trade union allegations of corruption and mismanagement against him. Mr. Wijesundera has vigorously denied these claims. The SLT board of directors has appointed an Executive Committee headed by Chairman P.G. [...]

Sri Lanka asserts following EU standards in tea exports

Sri Lanka stands ready to assure Russian authorities that it has adhered to plant quarantine regulations of that country in exporting tea, top government officials said. The national plant quarantine service is used to randomly check agriculture product consignments for export, Plantations Ministry Secretary, J.A. Ranjith told the Business Times. Sri Lanka follows the European [...]

Three pyramid type businesses under probe

Three pyramid schemes or those that are similar to such networks including Global Lifestyle Lanka Ltd are under investigation by the Central Bank (CB) and the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), CB officials say. The Chavakachcheri Magistrate Court in the Jaffna district earlier this month issued an interim injunction on Global Lifestyle Lanka Ltd (GLLL) based [...]

CB 2018 roadmap in first week Jan

The Central Bank’s annual roadmap of policies in 2018 is likely to be presented to ministers, government officials and key private sector CEOs in the first week of January, official sources said. The roadmap, last year titled “Road Map: Monetary and Financial Sector Policies for 2017 and Beyond” and expected to be presented by the [...]

Local shoe makers lose battle to stop Indian entry

Sri Lankan shoe manufacturers and trade unions have lost the battle to prevent a large Indian shoe maker from entering the domestic market here. When the National Labour Advisory Council (NLAC) met on Tuesday, Labour Minister John Seneviratne informed council members that the Prime Minister had explained that it was difficult to reverse the decision [...]

The dependency syndrome

The dependency syndrome

Last week’s ‘tiff’ with Russia over tea shows the power a single country can have on a particular export from Sri Lanka. While Sri Lankan authorities have begun negotiating with Russia’s agricultural safety office Rosselkhoznadzor (the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance) and other agencies, a team of Sri Lanka officials was arriving in [...]

Salt from Hambantota

Salt from Hambantota

Last week the Sri Lankan government received US$ 293 million from China Merchant Group, being the first payment of the $1.12 billion-worth Hambantota Port deal. The accumulated losses of the Hambantota Port for not generating returns to investment for the past six years were reported to be Rs. 46.7 billion by the end of 2016; [...]

Ceylinco Life’s Upamalika Ratnayake wins CIO of the Year award

Ceylinco Life’s Chief Digital Officer, Ms. Upamalika Ratnayake was named Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the Year at the first-ever Women in IT Awards (WITA) organised by the Women in IT Association in Sri Lanka, recently. The award was presented after an assessment of projects and achievements of exemplary female CIOs who have demonstrated innovation, [...]

Asia Securities launches financial sector investment conference series

Sri Lanka’s top equity brokerage firm Asia Securities recently held its inaugural financial sector investment conference titled “Shifting Gears: But Which Way?” in Colombo. The Asia Securities Financial Sector Investor Conference marked the 7th event under the “Wealth Insights” series of investor events which is now in its third year. This conference which generated value-added [...]

Sri Lanka plans to go for E-Court system

Sri Lanka is exploring the possibility of introducing paperless E-Court services as a remedy to the delay in expediting cases which has made litigants lose faith in the country’s judicial system, Justice Ministry sources said. Justice Minister Thalatha Athukorala’s attention has been drawn to the E-Court concept by Minister in the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Department [...]

Lakshan Madurasinghe’s life-changing journey at Habitat for Humanity

In a rare development, a volunteer at an international non-governmental agency has risen to head its Sri Lanka unit.Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka (HFHSL), in the backdrop of International Volunteer Day which was celebrated universally on December 5, used this opportunity to highlight the story of its current Board Chairman and President – Lakshan Madurasinghe, [...]

Kapruka CEO’s Eisenhower Fellowship brings wealth of knowledge to Sri Lanka’s e-commerce eco-system

Kapruka CEO’s Eisenhower Fellowship brings wealth of knowledge to Sri Lanka’s e-commerce eco-system

While receiving his first Eisenhower Fellowship in the US this year, CEO Dulith Herath brings to Sri Lanka a wealth of information, knowledge and ideas to boost the e-commerce eco-system in the country. Eisenhower Fellowship is a world renowned platform in the US where entrepreneurs meet world leaders and dignitaries from various fields of [...]

CA Sri Lanka’s inaugural research conference on corporate governance, sustainability accounting

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka) held its first ever research conference in Colombo earlier this week where corporate governance, sustainability assurance and forensic accounting which are deemed extremely relevant and important to the accounting profession in the current context were discussed and deliberated at length. The research conference was [...]

Sino-Lanka Rubber-Rice Pact symbolises ‘a friend in need, a friend indeed’

“The Sino-Sri Lanka relationship has become a model relationship between states with different social systems. We believe that, thanks to joint efforts of the two governments and the two peoples, Sino-Sri Lanka friendship will surely roll on incessantly like the Yangtze River and Mahaweli Ganga”. These sentiments made by former Chinese Premier Li Peng in [...]

Sri Lanka at crucial Silk Road NGO network forum

Sri Lanka at crucial  Silk Road NGO  network forum

Nishan K. Silva, Deputy Secretary of the Sri Lanka-China Friendship Association, represented Sri Lanka at the 1st Silk Road NGO Cooperation network forum held on November 21-22 Beijing, China. Over 60 countries and a total of 200 delegates from a variety of NGOs and the UN too part in the event. Mr. Silva made a [...]

Mobitel’s X Station facilitates first-ever 3D Printing Camp for school students

Mobitel’s X Station facilitates first-ever 3D Printing Camp for school students

Mobitel recently partnered with RCS2 Technologies (Pvt) Ltd and the Ministry of Education to organise a 3D Printing Camp for school students at the Mobitel’s Internet of Things (IoT) Concept Store X Station. Making its mark as the first 3D printing camp in Sri Lanka, the event encourages the proliferation and use of 3D printing [...]

Provision for provincial councils to collect more taxes – Finance Commission

The Finance Commission of Sri Lanka has presented its recommendations to the President who has in turn submitted it to Parliament after receiving Cabinet approval. In a media release, Commission Secretary A.T.M.U.D. Tennakoon, said the Speaker and the Chairman of the Constitutional Council at a meeting on December 8 with independent commissions have urged that [...]

Dilmah founder helps to rehabilitate prisoners

The man who created history in the tea industry in Sri Lanka asserting that the future of the industry lies in the concept of marketing tea as ‘Pure Ceylon Tea’ continues his success not only in business but human service. Merrill J Fernando, the creator of ‘Dilmah Tea’, believes that the duty and obligation of [...]

Bill and Melinda Gates vacationing in the Maldives

American business magnate and renowned philanthropist Bill Gates and his family are holidaying in the Maldives, Maldives Insider has learned. Reliable sources confirmed that Bill and Melinda Gates together with their three children arrived in the Maldives last week (Sunday morning). They travelled directly to Naladhu Private Island Maldives, the news website reported. Maldives Insider [...]

Private hospitals to be regulated by Feb. next year

The stage is set to regulate Sri Lanka’s private hospitals with the aim of streamlining patients care and sale of drugs in compliance with pharmaceutical policy, health services, surgeries and hospital charges. The relevant gazette notification will be issued in February 2018, Health Minister Dr. Rajitha Senaratne told the Business Times. He revealed that the [...]

Malin conferred with Lifetime Achievement at National Tea Awards

Malin conferred with Lifetime Achievement at National Tea Awards

Malin Goonetileke, Secretary General of Planters’ Association (PA), was honoured with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award at the National Tea Awards held recently at the Nelum Pokuna, Colombo. He was one of seven recipients, who were recognized for his outstanding contribution, for driving change and influence to leave a lasting legacy on the industry. Conferred [...]

Learnwell, an international brand of Science text books, now in Sinhala for Sri Lankan students

MBD, one of India’s largest education companies and the most prolific book publisher in the country, has donated 1,000 copies of Learnwell Science books for Sri Lankan students. The books were recently handed over to the Minister of Education Akila Viraj Kariyawasam by MBD’s Sri Lanka Country Manager Jayampathy Arambepola. The internationally recognised brand of [...]

Malay recipe book on traditional Sri Lankan Malay fare

Malay recipe book on  traditional Sri Lankan Malay fare

The Sri Lanka Malay Association recently launched a revised version of ‘Resipe Makanan Melayu’, a recipe book on authentic Sri Lankan Malay recipes. The event was graced by Thalatha Athukorala, Minister of Justice and Foreign Employment as Chief Guest. The book was sponsored by Knorr of Unilever Sri Lanka, with the integration of their unique [...]

Ravi takes over as Maliban Group CEO

Ravi takes over as Maliban Group CEO

Ravi Jayawardena has been appointed as a Group Chief Executive Officer of Maliban Group which comprises Maliban Biscuits Pvt Ltd, Maliban Milk Pvt Ltd and Maliban Agro Ltd with immediate effect. Previously he worked as a CEO (Sales & Marketing) for about eight years in the company. Mr. Jayawardena was one of the key members [...]

Desperate depositors of failed finance companies plead for help

“My husband was virtually killed owing to the negligence of (some) Central Bank (CB) authorities,” an elderly lady with tears in her eyes lamented at the AGM of the Citi Finance Depositors association held last at the Public Library auditorium in Colombo. She told the meeting her husband died as they could not find money [...]

LOLC micro credit celebrates high achievers at Grade 5 scholarship exam

LOLC micro credit  celebrates high achievers at Grade 5 scholarship exam

LOLC Micro Credit Ltd (LOMC), one of Sri Lanka’s largest microfinance providers, successfully concluded its annual ‘Isuru Diriya Sisu Upahara Scholarship Awards Ceremony’ at the BMICH recently. This year, the grand felicitation ceremony took place for the 8th consecutive year, awarding over 900 students who passed the 2017 national Grade 5 scholarship examination with flying [...]

80-year monopoly ends in the public hospital medical air trade

An over 80-year monopoly in the supply of medical air for public hospitals has come to an end with the awarding of a Health Ministry tender to a 100 per cent Sri Lankan-owned company in open competitive bidding and after a legal battle. This tender to supply medical air, which is used in ventilators, incubators [...]

Sri Lanka’s Smart Metro wins Gold at Asian IT awards

Sri Lanka’s Smart Metro wins Gold at Asian IT awards

Sri Lanka’s Smart Metro secured the Gold position, competing with entries from 16 other countries at the APICTA Awards 2017 held last week in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The winning award was made under the Retail and Supply Chain category for the product “Smart Tea”. The Asia Pacific ICT Alliance Awards (APICTA AWARDS) is an international awards [...]

WSO2 Tech Lead wins first-ever ‘Young Woman Engineer” award

C.S.A. Fernando, Senior Tech Lead at WSO2, became the first “Young Woman Engineer 2017” organised by the Sri Lanka Institution of Engineering & Technology (IETSL) in Colombo last week. S.W. Nelundeniya, Civil Engineer- CECB won the 1st runners up award and W.U.C. De Alwis, Research Engineer SYNERGEN Technology – won the 2nd runners up award. [...]

International Gem and Jewellery exhibition in Colombo

‘JEWELS – 2017′ – a Gem and Jewellery Exhibition, Competition and Jewels’ Talk, was held last week at Taj Colombo hotel. The event was dominated by a 40-strong Chinese delegation along with Russian, German and Belgian delegates at this international gem and jewellery fair and exhibition. The event was held for the 10th consecutive year. [...]

24 Gulf companies awarded for upholding workers’ rights

Dubai (Gulf News) – Creating an open-door policy for labourers to express their needs and engaging them in activities beyond their working hours have helped a UAE-based company achieve a five-star rating in the second edition of the Taqdeer Award Programme. Global Green Bridge Contracting was among three highest-scoring companies honoured on Tuesday in the [...]

Lanka IOC wins main award at National Chamber awards

Lanka IOC PLC, Indian Oil Corporation’s subsidiary in Sri Lanka, became the overall Gold Award Winner at the National Business Excellence Awards 2017 held at Colombo Hilton last week, organised by the National Chamber of Commerce, Sri Lanka. Lanka IOC also won awards under the categories of Extra Large and Trading. The Overall Silver and [...]

Three brothers who migrated to Canada set up Magick Woods plant in SL

Three brothers who migrated to Canada set up Magick Woods plant in SL

The climbing-up-the-world-business ladder by three brothers who migrated to Canada at the beginning of the ethnic tensions in Sri Lanka in 1983 is like a fairytale. The three brothers born in Manipay Jaffna started a manufacturing unit with the cabinetry designed for everyday living after completing their higher studies in Toronto in 1993. Their company [...]

One million jobs, major boon to local economy

The Government’s ambitious ‘Three Year Economic Delivery Programme’, will be a major boon to Sri Lanka’s job market as it envisages creating one million new jobs along with other medium-term targets such as per capita income of US$ 5,000, FDI inflows of $5 billion, and doubling exports to $20 billion by 2020. The budget has [...]

Ken’s “They Call Him Ken” book proceeds given to charity

Ken’s “They  Call  Him Ken” book proceeds given to charity

Former Chairman of John Keells Holdings Ken Balendra who saw the release of his biography – They Call Him Ken – in September this year, presented the proceeds of the books sold thus far to the designated charity, Friends of Prisoners’ Children (FPC) Trust. A total of Rs. 536,000 was presented to the Chairperson of [...]

Christmas edition of the Colombo City Tour service

Christmas edition of the Colombo City Tour service

A special service which coincides with the annual Christmas Fest organised by Sri Lanka Tourism began picking up tourists from all leading city hotels and taking them to the seasonal city attractions, Christmas Fest at the Independence Arcade from December 20 to 22 and Christmas Street at Green Path from December 21 to 23 on [...]

Export chamber creates export linkages with Northeast producers

The National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka (NCE) has recently collaborated with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) with a view to establish business linkages for export with agricultural producers in Sri Lanka’s North and East. In this context, an awareness seminar for exporters regarding agricultural products available in the two regions was held late [...]

Moody’s view on Lanka’s fiscal reforms, exposure to liquidity and external vulnerability risks

New York – Moody’s Investors Service says that Sri Lanka’s (B1 negative) high general government debt levels, very low debt affordability, and fragile external payments position continue to present the country with material credit challenges. In particular, persistently high government liquidity and external vulnerability risks will maintain pressure on the sovereign’s credit profile, as large [...]

Industry urges ‘accreditation’ for blue collar labour

Industry urges ‘accreditation’ for blue collar labour

Despite the plethora of cranes lining Colombo’s skyline, the construction industry that is struggling with higher demand is facing a greying, diminishing labour pool. The industry is also improving the working environment to lure people to join the construction sector, but perennial issues in labour in this industry have left a big question mark in [...]

Big year ahead for real estate in Sri Lanka

Big year ahead for real estate in Sri Lanka

The year 2018 is expected to be a milestone for Sri Lanka’s real estate sector and for all Sri Lankans. It is expected that a signif icant number of new developments under construction now will be completed in 2018 including landmark developments such as the Colombo City Centre, Dynasty, Altair and Astoria. Colombo will also [...]

SL condo space costlier than China or Berlin

SL condo space costlier than China  or Berlin

Sri Lanka’s rental cost is far higher than that of China and Berlin, the Business Times found out. According to property analysts, 111 square metres (m2) of rental space in Colombo costs US$ 1, 500. At the same cost in Shanghai 158 m2 can be obtained at $1,500 while a space of 133 m2 in [...]

Treasury agrees to VAT imposition only on new projects

The Treasury has promised the Condominium Developers Association of Sri Lanka (CDASL) that the recent budget proposal to impose Value Added Tax (VAT) to condo builders will only be applicable on the sale of new condominium housing units with effect from April 1, 2018. This was in response to a letter the CDASL had sent [...]

FIU assessing risk on DNFBs to combat black cash

The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) is assessing the risk weightage of Designated Non-Finance Businesses (DNFBs) to the financial system pertaining to money laundering and is focusing on the condominiums sub sector as a priority, officials say. The FIU, an arm of the Central Bank (CB) has been following black money trails and is collating data [...]

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