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Poll could go 3 ways with SLPP leading: Survey

Poll could go 3 ways with SLPP leading: Survey

The Mahinda Rajapaksa-controlled Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) was seen garnering more support than the United National Party (UNP) or the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) led by President Maithripala Sirisena at yesterday’s local government elections, a joint survey by the Business Times (BT) and polling partner, Second Curve reveals. By the time these survey [...]

Cost for LG bodies doubles with increase in members

With the conclusion of local government elections yesterday at a cost of around Rs. 4 billion, the expenditure of maintaining 340 local authorities has been almost doubled as the number of elected members has gone up to 8,356 from 4,486, previously. The Treasury will be facing an uphill task of allocating money for the recurrent [...]

RPCs teas to be tested from next week

Regional Plantation Companies’ (RPC) tea estates will be subject to checks from the Sri Lanka Tea Board (SLTB) as authorities gear up to meet international standards on residue levels of pesticides with Japanese authorities asking Ceylon Tea to clean up its act. In the wake of the Japanese request for a reduction in the residue [...]

Excavator stuck? Call for tenders

Government advertisements in newspapers are usually boring but not this one. An advertisement on Friday by the Provincial Road Development Authority in the Western Province called for public bids for a peculiar assignment – pulling out an excavator that is stuck in the mud! The bids will be opened on February 23, with the excavator [...]

Public Enterprises Ministry probes Rs. 1 bln BoC bad debt

The Ministry of Public Enterprises has ordered a probe into an alleged Rs. 1 billion bad debt at the Bank of Ceylon (BoC) and also requested the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to carry out an investigation, ministry sources added. The BoC comes under the ministry They said that BoC’s Credit Committee is also under fire [...]

Fighting for migrant workers

Fighting for migrant workers

Missing, or rather, not enough attention has been given to the rights of female migrant workers and their status in society in the just-concluded election campaign for local authorities. Our attention was drawn to this one morning when Kussi Amma Sera, preparing the morning cup of tea, said: “Mahattaya, apey pitarata rassawata yana lamei gena [...]

FDI flows to Asia: No size too small

FDI flows to Asia: No size too small

It was reported that Sri Lanka’s US$1.6 billion foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2017 was double the amount reported in the previous year and, was the highest that the country has ever received.  Today I intend to talk about, not the Sri Lankan record last year, but the “world record of FDI flows.” In doing [...]

New electoral system will ensure more accountability

The new system will enable voters to ‘catch their elected representatives’ if they fail to deliver the goods, according to comments received in an opinion poll on the local government elections. But respondents were concerned that the doubling of representatives and costs to maintain them, would further burden the public. The poll was conducted on [...]

ComBank sets record ATM withdrawal in December

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon dispensed Rs. 50.769 billion in cash through its automated teller machines (ATMs) in December 2017, setting a new record and achieving an important milestone in such disbursement, the bank said in a media release. The 750-terminal network processed more than eight million withdrawal requests over the 31 days of the [...]

Mentos now made in Sri Lanka

Mentos now made in Sri Lanka

Perfetti Van Melle (PVM) Sri Lanka, the renowned confectionery company, has begun local production of the much loved brand ‘Mentos’ for the first time in Sri Lanka. This would offer local consumers a wider range of products under the Mentos brand at affordable prices. As a first step, consumers will now be able to purchase [...]

EDB, gem/jewellery industry to jointly encourage designers

The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) and the Sri Lanka Gem and Jewellery Association (SLGJA) in collaboration with the Academy of Design (AOD) has launched a 12-month Diploma in Jewellery Designing to develop the jewellery designer pool by attracting young and talented designers towards the industry. An EDB media release said the gem and [...]

Sri Lanka’s special Port City legislation to be presented soon

Sri Lanka’s special Port City legislation will be presented in parliament soon, as new laws and regulations are essential for a mega project of this nature, a frontline Deputy Minister of the government disclosed. “Multiple emerging opportunities have been considered in drafting this new legislation in consistency with the constitution creating an oasis for businesses [...]

Lazard, world’s top investment bank, explores Sri Lanka; works with MTI

Recognised as one of the world’s preeminent financial advisory and asset management firms, the 170 year-old Lazard has shown interest in Sri Lanka, with a visit last week by an international delegation, in co-operation with MTI Consulting. The global financial advisory firm, in conjunction with MTI Consulting, was due to meet officials of the Sri [...]

Ravi and Janaki – pioneers in market research

Ravi and Janaki – pioneers  in market research

The partnership of Ravi and Janaki Bamunusinghe in the field of market research is over three decades. Together they have built two leading market research agencies adding value to strategic decisions of national, international and multinational businesses, according to a recent interview with the veteran market research duo. Janaki is a disciple of the legendary [...]

Fitch affirms Sri Lanka rating at ‘B+’

Fitch Ratings on Wednesday affirmed Sri Lanka’s Long-Term Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at ‘B+’ with a ‘Stable Outlook’. In Fitch’s view, policies aimed at fiscal consolidation and maintenance of a disciplined monetary stance under the framework of the 3-year IMF-supported programme have improved Sri Lanka’s policy coherence and credibility, the rating agency said in [...]

Sri Lanka’s export performance failed in past 2 decades : President

President Maithripala Sirisena, at a public event last week, strongly criticised Sri Lanka’s export performance over the past two decades saying one of the reasons is that local industry has been sidelined. Addressing the opening of the 10th Annual Footwear and Leather Fair 2017 at the BMICH in Colombo, the President said exports has been [...]

Mismatches, dismal interest loses Sri Lanka’s glow

Mismatches, dismal interest loses  Sri Lanka’s glow

Presently Sri Lanka enjoys over 2.1 million tourists per year and earns US$3.5 billion in foreign exchange and has become the second largest foreign exchange earner in net income. The industry has also given employment to over 170,000 directly. After the war in 2009 Sri Lanka was in the news all over the world and [...]

Chinese wary of Sri Lanka, holiday elsewhere

Chinese wary of Sri Lanka, holiday elsewhere

Sri Lanka’s tourist arrivals gained in January by 12 per cent but saw a significant drop in Chinese visitors to the country for the month. Chinese arrivals saw a sharp drop of 22 per cent last month compared to the same period in 2017. Interestingly the Chinese market has been faced with a number of [...]

Airlines set to zero in on travel agents “Commis”

Sri Lankan travel agents have been adversely impacted over the low or zero commission levels reached under new airline rules. Some travel agents noted that there had been a reduction in staff since they were unable to cope with the lack of extra earnings made through the commissions, industry sources said. It was pointed out [...]

Krisflyer to launch world’s first airline digital wallet

The SIA Group’s KrisFlyer frequent-flyer programme is to launch a world’s first blockchain-based airline loyalty digital wallet capability that will help unlock the value of KrisFlyer miles to enable everyday spending at retail partners. A new KrisFlyer digital wallet app utilising this innovative technology is expected to be rolled out in about six months. It [...]

CIM hops aboard CNN blitz

The Government is planning to co-opt the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) as an advisor on how to market Sri Lanka Tourism as part of the media blitz on CNN, informed sources said. Earlier the Cabinet Committee on Economic Management (CCEM) had approved the campaign on CNN and it was thereafter sent to the board [...]

Sri Lanka Tourism sees Mumbai as market for high growth

Sri Lanka Tourism started off its 2018 tourism calendar with a positive output by participating in the 5th edition of the India International Travel & Tourism Exhibition –IITT 2018. “It was a resounding success with more than 28,000 enthusiastic visitors and more than 500 fully hosted buyers who attended the event” a media release issued [...]

Sri Lankan-led UK firm produces organic coconut flour

Sri Lankan-led UK firm produces organic coconut flour

Coconut Miracle (Pvt) Ltd, a UK-based corporate entity located in West Sussex with its manufacturing arm in Sri Lanka which has successfully marketed extra virgin coconut oil, has also embarked on manufacturing and marketing ‘Coconut Miracle’ organic coconut flour which is uniquely different from all other wheat alternatives. Shani Ahangama hailing from Sri Lanka’s southern [...]

Sri Lankan firm, Axienta named in Gartner Market Guide

Gartner, a US IT advisory company that compiles information technology related insight to global government and business leaders, has recognised Axienta as a Representative Vendor in REM Vendors: Complementary Functionality. It is the first Sri Lankan company to be named in Gartner’s research for Retail Execution and Monitoring (REM). The Vantage technology offered by Axienta [...]

Informal labour market a threat to employed women

Labour market informality has accelerated with the trend towards precarious employment growing which means that more and more women are likely to be unemployed and face income security and for those employed, their wages would fall. This was expressed by Priti Darooka, Senior Asia Researcher and Representative, Business and Human Rights Resources Centre, New Delhi [...]

USAID launches youth employment and skills project in Central Province

USAID launches youth  employment and skills project in Central Province

Visiting US Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs Daniel Rosenblum opened the Kandy YouLead office on February 2, which aims to expand employment opportunities for youth in the Central Province. Funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented in partnership with the Ministry of Skills [...]

Government grapples with pension payment irregularities

The Government is grappling to tackle pension payment irregularities at the Pensions Department with the increase in the number of pensioners at the rate of two thousand while paying Rs. 10 billion for around 580,000 retired senior citizens every month, Public Administration Ministry sources divulged. The massive increase in public sector employees to over 1.27 [...]

Sri Lanka’s Tyre House in deal with Maxxis

Sri Lanka’s Tyre House in deal with Maxxis

Maxxis tyre marketing activity proposal for 2018 was signed by Maxxis International –Vice President Lenny Lee (left) and Sri Lanka’s Tyre House Group Managing Director Sunil Fonseka late last month at Maxxis headquarters in Taiwan

Slave versus the Conqueror

“Such a familiar landscape!” Nihal exclaims as they drive down one of the most crucial road networks in the country. “Year on and on we pass the exact same stretch on this main road, but what has changed? I mean, I used to take this road when travelling to school. Yes, there are new buildings [...]

Hayleys Puritas wins global water award

Puritas, a subsidiary of the Hayleys Group, was a world winner in the category of Water – for its acclaimed Hayleys’ Puritas Sathdiyawara project for providing clean drinking water to people with chronic kidney disease through its reverse osmosis water purification systems and comprehensive strategic village upliftment. The first place was tied with the Kerman [...]

The Mall opens next year Q2 at Shangri-La

The next biggest store, The Mall on Thursday signed up its first tenants to soon enter the building at One Galle Face which is expected to also be the best address in town to live and work. The Mall’s anchor tenants – Odel Plc, Keells Super, Food Studio and PVR Cinemas were handed over a [...]

AIA Vitality users support Little Hearts Foundation

AIA Vitality app users chose the ‘Charity’ option as their AIA Vitality reward and donated a sum of Rs. 200,000 in the month of November 2017. “Each user made a donation of Rs. 500 per reward towards the Critical Care Unit for children at the Lady Ridgeway Hospital. The Little Hearts Foundation wishes to extend [...]

Hutch 4G launch delayed on competitor tactics

Hutchison Telecommunications in Colombo is in a fix as the launch of its 4G product has been delayed by the release of equipment at the Colombo Port allegedly due to crass bureaucracy by the telecom regulator instigated by a local mobile operator, sources close to the company said. They told the Business Times that these [...]

$9 bln has to be paid off as debt in next 2 years: PM

A committee comprising the President of the CA Sri Lanka, a member of the Monetary Board and another member, has been appointed to examine state accounts of the previous administration before it is submitted to the parliament finance committee. This was stated by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Chief Guest at the induction of the 24th [...]

Team XYZ emerges champion at Virtusa LAN Challenge 2018

Team XYZ emerges champion at Virtusa LAN Challenge 2018

Team XYZ from General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University (KDU) beat team In Toxic from Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT) to emerge as the champions of the Virtusa LAN Challenge 2018. They walked away with the grand prize of Rs.100,000 at the finals held at Virtusa’s Colombo Advanced Technology Centre (ATC) recently, according to a [...]

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