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Floating hotel

Floating hotel

Sail Lanka, a pioneering yacht company that builds and operates yachts across the island’s coasts, has announced the entry of the Ocean Diamond, a luxury yacht with 10 cabins which can accommodate 22 guests for overnight stays. The company has a fleet of 10 yachts, designed and built at its facility at the Koggala Free [...]

COVID-19 crisis blows hole in Budget 2021

The Finance Ministry is now making preliminary arrangements in the challenging process of preparing Budget 2021 in accordance with the government’s National Policy Framework ‘Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour’. The Appropriation Bill will be presented in Parliament in October in line with general practice and the comprehensive budget 2021 will be presented, the following month, [...]

US Biden win would attract foreign interest for CSE

Sri Lanka following the landslide victory by the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP), has improved the investor climate in the share market with institutional investors being active, showing interest in blue-chip counters. The concern however is in the declining foreign purchases – only Rs. 30 million out of a total turnover of Rs. 2 billion [...]

Office space downsizing by corporates leave owners alarmed

One struggling tenant is a pain. All struggling tenants are a disaster. This has now become truer for more commercial/retail space owners who are trying to keep their head above the water. The coronavirus pandemic which has literally messed the economy has seen ‘downsizing’ becoming the new mantra for corporates. With the country’s strict labour [...]

Tourism braces for risky winter spell

Notwithstanding the risk of infections, tourism authorities are seeking approvals for the reopening of the country’s international airport in a bid to kick-start the industry for the winter season. Tourism Minister Prasanna Ranatunga told the Business Times on Friday that while “there will be a small risk” they will be seeking approval from the health [...]

Stalemate in SL-Iran barter trade pact

Sri Lanka’s exports of Ceylon tea in exchange for reducing debts on oil purchases from Iran is still held up in talks as the state-run petroleum company wants further guarantees while other elements are seeking to stall these trade deals. Sri Lanka is still continuing discussions between the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) and the Treasury [...]

New airline seeks approval for charter flights

A new carrier is tipped to take to Sri Lanka’s skies providing domestic charter flights upon receiving approvals. Openskies Flight Training Pvt. Ltd, situated in Panadura, is currently seeking approvals to engage in domestic flight operations from the Civil Aviation Authority. The organisation has been in operation as a family-owned business incorporated in 2008 offering [...]

In the dark

In the dark

Kussi Amma Sera, Mabel Rasthiyadu and Serapina had gathered at the gate this Thursday morning, chatting with Aldoris, the choon-paan karaya, while munching on maalu-paan and tea-buns. Only the cup of tea was missing.  “Loku Nona, me light kapana eka ape bakeriyata balapanawa. Apita tranformarayak ganna be ne (Madam, these power cuts are affecting our [...]

Jobless graduates

Jobless graduates

A few weeks ago, I was invited to speak on the “employability of university graduates” at a workshop for the junior university lecturers. Together with me, Manjula De Silva, General Secretary and CEO of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce had also been invited to speak as a resource person representing the business sector. Since our [...]

Public administration to undergo new restructuring process

Sri Lanka’s public administration is set to undergo a far-reaching restructuring process to meet the needs of the present government’s vision of ‘Prosperity and Splendour’, head of Presidential Task Force on Economic Revival has revealed. Structural and administrative changes in the overall public service will be brought to the attention of the President, the Prime [...]

SL plantation companies to lose Rs.500 mln due to govt. vacillation on oil palm

SL plantation companies to lose Rs.500 mln  due to govt. vacillation on oil palm

Plantation companies will sustain a cumulative loss of more than Rs.500 million within months due to policy inconsistencies and vacillation by the government on a well-regulated expansion of Sri Lanka’s oil palm cultivation, the sector’s apex industry association has warned. In a media release, the Palm Oil Industry Association (POIA) said 356,000 oil palm plants [...]

Listed company cancels dividend declaration

Overseas Realty (Ceylon) Plc (ORL) is a company established in 1980 by an expatriate, S.P. Tao to develop property for investment in Sri Lanka. It owns the World Trade Centre (WTC) and Havelock City. It has 20 major shareholders – foreign and local billionaire investors and institutions and about 3900 minority shareholders. Minority shareholders own [...]

Piramal Glass Ceylon revenue of Rs 1.33 bn in Q1- F21

Piramal Glass Ceylon has said that the company is facing the most unprecedented times in the history of mankind with the onset of the worst global pandemic – COVID-19. “It has affected all countries and communities in the world with no concrete solution in sight as either a vaccine or medication,” said CEO Piramal Glass, [...]

Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts initiates safety stamp for Sri Lanka

Assuring domestic and international travellers of being a safe travel destination practicing globally streamlined hygiene procedures, Sri Lanka was recently stamped safe by the World Travel and Tourism Council’s (WTTC), an endeavour initiated by Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts and carried out by Sri Lanka Tourism. “We consider it a privilege to have been able to [...]

Sri Lanka’s real estate market has experienced intensifying demand for grade A and B offices from both domestic and foreign establishments

Sri Lanka’s real estate market has experienced intensifying demand for grade A and B offices from both domestic and foreign establishments

Since the emergence of COVID-19, commercial real estate tenants’ traditional behaviours, expectations of an office, have changed. In this new norm, commercial real estate developers / landlords are challenged to find new and effective ways to improve workplace performance, according to the latest Research Intelligence Unit (RIU) report on Sri Lanka’s commercial market. To help [...]

CB to introduce new scheme for housing to revive COVID-19 groups

The Central Bank (CB) is working on giving housing loans to lower to middle income groups affected by COVID-19. “We are working on a new subject area for a credit programme in this regard. We will inform the details soon,” Prof. W.D. Lakshman, Governor CB said responding to a question by the Business Times at [...]

New CEO/MD at Airtel Lanka

New CEO/MD at Airtel Lanka

Airtel Lanka has announced the appointment of Ashish Chandra as Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. In his new role, Mr. Chandra has the mandate to accelerate Airtel’s growth in the Sri Lankan market by leveraging best-in-class network technologies and innovative digital platforms, the company said in a statement. Commenting on the appointment, Gopal Vittal, [...]

New enhanced ‘DFCC Virtual Wallet’ launched

DFCC recently launched the enhanced version of the Virtual Wallet application for all Sri Lankans under the theme “you don’t need to touch cash to do your financial transactions”. Adding a wealth of new features which are set to foster higher levels of customer convenience, the application is among the most innovative digital platforms that [...]

LAUGFS Holdings celebrates 25 years of Sri Lankan entrepreneurship

LAUGFS Holdings Ltd, one of Sri Lanka’s largest diversified business conglomerates, is celebrating 25 years in business. Its inception was Gas Auto Lanka, a revolutionary business that introduced LPG as an alternate fuel for motor vehicles. Propelled by this entrepreneurial spirit LAUGFS went on to become trailblazers in many industries in Sri Lanka. Currently the [...]

Management-owned travel and aviation group rebrands as ‘Acorn’

Management-owned travel and aviation group rebrands as ‘Acorn’

The Acorn Group, which encompasses multiple businesses and leading international brands in the travel and aviation industry, has been launched recently. The group is headed by an experienced team of professionals focused on providing unparalleled service excellence to complement the evolving travel and tourism landscape Aspiring to reach new heights in the travel and aviation [...]

Discussions between SL’s US embassy and EDB

Sri Lanka’s US Ambassador Rodney Perera and Chairman of Export Development Board (EDB) Prabhash Subasinghe have discussed ways to further diversify and increase Sri Lanka’s exports to the US in keeping with the vision of the President and the new government to strengthen the local economy and enhance export income. This happened at a virtual [...]

Fayaz, Sega and Rohitha elevated to “Chartered Manager Companion” status

Fayaz, Sega and Rohitha elevated to “Chartered Manager Companion” status

Fayaz Saleem, Past President of CMI – Founder and President Emeritus of The Management Club and Managing Director of Mankind International Ltd, together with Sega Nagendra – who has and still holds numerous Independent Director roles in some of the largest listed companies and Rohitha Mendis, Managing Director of Prudential Shipping and Helanka Group, both [...]

Rate cut exerts very little stimulus for investors but big impact on savers

Sri Lanka’s expectation of encouraging borrowings by lowering interest rates as a key tool to stimulate economy during the COVID-19 crisis period has very little impact in spending and investment, several economic analysts and bankers said. Low interest rates cannot rescue Sri Lanka in the present stage of economic calamity; they simply cause the money [...]

HNB posts Rs 5.5 bn 1H Group PAT

HNB posted resilient financial results during the 1H 2020 amid the unprecedented disruptions of COVID-19 pandemic with group PAT (post-tax profit) for 1H2020-21 increasing by 6.8 per cent YoY to Rs.5.5 billion while bank level PAT declined by 7 per cent YoY to Rs. 4.5 billion. “Sri Lanka’s performance in managing the transmission of COVID-19 [...]

NSB enables enterprise-level fraud management with ACI Worldwide

ACI Worldwide, a leading global provider of real-time digital payment software and solutions, has announced that Sri Lanka’s National Savings Bank (NSB) will leverage its Payments Risk Management solution to enable enterprise-wide fraud detection and prevention. NSB is one of Sri Lanka’s largest public sector banks, with more than 4,000 service points, including branches, post [...]

SLIC, Education Ministry launch COVID-19 video guide for schools

SLIC, Education Ministry launch COVID-19 video guide for schools

Sri Lanka Insurance (SLIC) together with the Ministry of Education has launched an official video guide for schools and educational institutes to help raise awareness on control and prevention of COVID-19. The ‘Good Practice For a Healthy Future ‘official video guideline was developed in line with the circular and the guidelines issued by the Ministry [...]

Millionaire Mindset: The Quarantine Quandary

Returning to Sri Lanka with my wife and son on a repatriation flight, there was one question that needed to be answered regarding our mandatory 14-day quarantine. Should we quarantine ourselves at a fancy hotel or at the government facility? The decision was a straightforward one for me but caused raised eyebrows in certain quarters. [...]

ComBank’s assets cross milestone Rs 1.5 trillion in 1H 2020

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon Group has reported mixed results for the first half of 2020, with robust top line growth negated by a combination of factors including pressure on interest margins due to reduced credit demand and interest concessions granted as pandemic relief to borrowers, increasing impairment provisions and low yields on surplus liquidity. [...]

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