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Normal activities resume in Colombo

Normal activities resume in Colombo

Rush for “no questions-asked” foreign exchange deposits

Sri Lanka has been inundated with requests to open Special Deposit Accounts (SDAs) declared by the government in April with everyone from foreign monthly wage earners to high net worth individuals cashing in, in a mad rush to invest. Many bankers are hoping that this won’t be a funnel for inventive black money moguls to [...]

Government delays development project contractor payments

The coronavirus outbreak has worsened the situation for local and foreign construction contractors following the government’s decision to phase-out their payment for five years for the work done in development projects including express highways. The Finance Ministry has conveyed this decision to relevant companies informing them that of the unavoidable delay in project completion owing [...]

Govt. to prioritise Sri Lankans before foreigners

The Sri Lankan government is looking at bringing home Sri Lankans stranded overseas before opening up to tourists. In this respect, at the COVID-19 Presidential Task Force meeting on Tuesday, authorities looked at the possibility of opening up the country for tourist arrivals from any country and while adhering to health guidelines will target group [...]

CSE sees influx in local CDS accounts

The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) saw a large number of new accounts opening from the day it resumed trading (May 11) after the 51-day closure. CSE data show that from May 11 to May 27 local investors opened 705 Central Depository System (CDS) accounts while foreign investors had opened 10. For the entire year so [...]

Apparel consumers shun China; Factories improve operations

As consumers are likely to shun China post COVID-19, Sri Lankan apparel exporters believe it’s the right time to fast-track the Eravur fabric park in the East and set up polyester fabric mills of at least four confirmed companies. Currently Sri Lanka retains about 60 per cent on average of the value addition within the [...]

No more buffets

No more buffets

When local guests begin frequenting restaurants and bars in hotels after they open in Colombo following a near 2-month curfew and lockdown, they are bound to miss the ever-popular buffets. This is one of the changes that will be implemented when hotels start opening out for banquets, weddings and other events, with the number of [...]

Going for a “half-and-half”

Going for a “half-and-half”

As we have been stuck at home for weeks under the lockdown set up, sometimes we had to look for different meals from outside for various reasons. One evening, we also placed an order for a meal from a pizza restaurant. Here comes pizza, and they were “half-and-half” pizza. Usually the customers visiting a pizza [...]

Sri Lanka’s seafood sector begins to bounce back

Sri Lanka’s seafood exports will bounce back following the exiting of the lockdown and resuming economic activities during COVID-19 as the industry is one step ahead in the global supply chain. The country’s seafood exports were 70 per cent intact in the global supply chain by connecting Sri Lankan exporters with importers in several countries [...]

Tourism industry laid-off worker sells ‘kos’ to feed family

Tourism industry laid-off worker sells ‘kos’ to feed family

Many people from various sectors including tourism have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, some losing their jobs and others getting a reduced wage. In a bid to survive, those who have lost jobs will do anything to sustain themselves and their family. One such individual is Asela Laksiri from Kudahakapola, Ja-Ela. He said: “I [...]

World Vision launches $2.3 m COVID-19 Response Phase II

World Vision launches $2.3 m COVID-19 Response Phase II

World Vision Lanka has launched its second phase of the COVID-19 Emergency Response amounting to US$2.3 million. The second phase will focus on food security and livelihood, health and hygiene, and child protection and education of the most vulnerable families in 16 districts, the organisation said in a media release. “COVID-19, we fear, will have [...]

Hotels likely to lose 80% in revenue

Hoteliers opened up their establishments on Tuesday but will witness a significant drop in revenue of about 80 per cent compared to earnings made last year. Permission was granted to open restaurants, banqueting and bars while maintaining the required health guidelines. City Hotels Association President M. Shanthikumar told the Business Times that they expect a [...]

Seylan Bank reports Rs. 902 m post-tax profit in Q1 2020

Seylan Bank has recorded a post-tax profit of Rs. 902 million in Q1 2020 despite challenging market conditions, the bank said in a public statement on Wednesday. This was marginally higher than the post-tax profit of Rs. 895 million reported in the same 2019 quarter. Net interest income increased by 7.28 per cent during the [...]

Multiple earning skills among next generation Sri Lankan employees working from home

Multiple earning skills among  next generation Sri Lankan employees working from home

Since the ‘work from home’ culture was implemented in organisations with the COVID-19 lockdown, there is a new breed of skills emerging among employees. HR practitioners and experts predict that next generation of employees will have multiple earning skills – without just working for one organisation while working from home. The ‘work from home’ culture [...]

Special Commodity Levy hiked to reduce tax revenue loss

The Special Commodity Levy (SCL) hike on 26 products including some food items will offset the revenue loss caused by the prohibition of non-essential imports last month. The SCL has been increased for six months with effect from May 22, the Finance Ministry said. Import restrictions on several product categories related to exports and production [...]

SEC determined to expedite probes

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is determined to expedite the probes against capital market offenders that have been on their hands for more than half a decade. “We have about 50 cases so far and we broad-based the Surveillance Committee from the initial two to four people,” Viraj Dayaratne, Chairman SEC said in an [...]

Aitken Spence records lower pre-tax profit for2019-20 amidst unprecedented challenges

Aitken Spence PLC has remained resilient for the financial year ending March 2020 despite severe challenges during a period in which two disastrous events – the Easter Sunday attacks and the COVID-19 pandemic – occurred. The group’s financial performance for the 12 months ending March 31, 2020 saw a lower year-on-year profit-before-tax (PBT) of Rs. [...]

ComBank declared ‘strongest bank brand’ in Sri Lanka by Brand Finance

Brand Finance has declared Commercial Bank of Ceylon the ‘strongest banking brand’ in Sri Lanka in 2020, reaffirming the strength the brand and ranking the bank fourth among all brands in in the country as well as assigning the bank the highest brand value growth among the top 10 corporates in the list. The bank [...]

Piyadasa Kudabalage appointed Group Managing Director/CEO of LAUGFS Holdings

Piyadasa Kudabalage has taken over as Group Managing Director/CEO of LAUGFS Holdings Ltd with effect from May 21. The company said in an announcement on Wednesday that Mr. Kudabalage will consequently oversee the operations of LAUGFS Holdings Ltd and all its subsidiaries and associates involved with multiple sectors of the economy. W. K. H. Wegapitiya [...]

BMICH enforces stringent health and safety measures to resume operations

The BMICH has implemented stringent health and safety measures to ensure a health safety environment for its customers, visitors, exhibitors, staff and tenants when normalcy returns after a prolonged period of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the meantime, the BMICH has been operating the essential services during this period, for the essential services [...]

BOC promotes no-questions asked Special Deposit Account (SDA)

With the objective to encourage foreign income earners in the country, Bank of Ceylon (BOC) is promoting the Special Deposit Account (SDA) including those who receive their foreign remittances both in foreign currency and/or in Sri Lankan Rupees. The duration allowed to open SDA account will be available only for a period of first six [...]

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