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COVID-19 testing at construction sites

COVID-19 testing at construction sites

Indian workers at a construction site in Colombo wait in line on Friday for COVID-19 PCR testing by the Colombo Municipal Council’s health department. Pic by Amila Gamage.

Pressure to increase Sri Lankan fuel prices

The government while striving to keep the current fuel prices stable is under pressure to revise prices and taxes if the world oil prices continue on its upward trend in the next few months, official sources said. A fuel tax revision is unavoidable as government revenue is expected to decline owing to a drop in [...]

Mayadunne committee submits report on JCT cranes to President

The committee report on the issues pertaining to the procurement of cranes for the expanded Jaya Container Terminal (JCT) and now installed at the East Container Terminal (ECT) has been submitted to the Presidential Secretariat on Tuesday. Committee head and former Ports and Shipping Ministry Secretary M.M.P.K. Mayadunne told the Business Times on Thursday that [...]

State institutions ups trading activity

At least two government institutions have increased their trading activity in the Colombo Stock Exchange. They are trading – mostly selling certain blue chips, according to stockbrokers. “This may be after realising the need to lock in the maximum value at this point, before the stock prices increase further,” a stockbroker told the Business Times. [...]

Sri Lanka’s tax policy framework to be re-engineered

The government will be continuing the measures to re-engineer Sri Lanka’s tax policy framework aimed at creating a simple, transparent and efficient tax system that will promote self-compliance and easy tax administration in the 2021 budget after regulating necessary amendments and statutes within the next two months All taxes under the reforms introduced by the [...]

Government encourages foreign interest on securities market

Government will be encouraging foreign interest on the rupee-denominated securities market providing tax and other incentives, State Minister of Finance Ajith Nivard Cabraal told the Business Times. Investments in Treasury bills and bonds although it is vital to ease the pressure on domestic interest rates and reduce the government funding cost, should be allowed cautiously, [...]

Boom in M&A, outright sales in biz

Sri Lankan firms are seeing many mergers and acquisitions (M&A), in part and outright sales across many industries. In a period of disorder and paralysis rooted by the COVID-19 crisis, which sent stock markets reeling and slammed debt markets shut, these transactions are already being done vigorously. “Many are starting to do strategic revenue growth [...]

Fishing in troubled waters

Fishing in troubled waters

This is by no means a fishy tale but built around a conversation between Kussi Amma Sera, Mabel Rasthiyadu and Serapina on Wednesday morning.  At the gate when Karthelis, the fish vendor, came on his motor-bike, the trio pounced on him, saying that the fish prices were too high. “Aney, aei ape ratata athewenna maalu [...]

Human-elephant clash over land

Human-elephant clash over land

Last year on average, one person has been killed every three days of the year by an elephant in Sri Lanka. In contrast, every single day of the year more than one elephant has also been killed by humans. The fight has become intense over the years and decades causing more and more deaths – [...]

Govt. prepares to implement Rubber Master Plan

The Sri Lanka government has commenced work on the implementation of the Rubber Master Plan crucial for the development of the sector aimed at increasing yields while taking a pragmatic decision not to interfere in pricing. With the rubber industry facing a number of issues the government has appointed a committee to look into the [...]

Nimal Lokuge takes over from Rohan Karunaratne as Chairman Agstar

Nimal Lokuge takes over from Rohan Karunaratne  as Chairman Agstar

Long-time Chairman Rohan Karunaratne is retiring at Agstar PLC and will be succeeded by Nimal Lokuge. Mr. Karunaratne, affectionately known as the ‘father of Agstar’, is one of the most respected figures in Sri Lanka’s agriculture sphere, having earlier carved a name for himself while on the board of Ceylon Tobacco and later at CIC [...]

Pan Asia Bank launches new Current Account

Pan Asia Bank has launched a new Current Account to coincide with its 25th anniversary. The new product invites customers to experience the difference of bearing no additional fees until December 31, 2021. “When customers open this Current Account they do not have to pay any charges other than inward cheque return charges. All other [...]

Ravi Liyanage, new CEO at Janashakthi Insurance

Ravi Liyanage, new CEO  at Janashakthi Insurance

Janashakthi Insurance PLC has appointed Ravi Liyanage as the company’s Director/CEO with effect from November 16, 2020. “It is my great pleasure to welcome Ravi Liyanage to Janashakthi as its CEO,” said Prakash Schaffter, Chairman of Janashakthi Insurance PLC in a media release. The new CEO brings years of knowledge to the company with his [...]

COVID-19 will be prevalent for another year or more

Several foot tray mats were donated to officials of the Department of Immigration and Emigration and other state officials at the launch of the EDGENG Max Sanitising Foot Mats at Suhurupaya Building at Battaramulla this week in the presence of the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Defence Ms. M. Seneviratne, the Chief Guests and [...]

CRIB undergoes reforms with a new points system

The government is now set to reform the Credit Information Bureau (CRIB) with a points system for borrowers, instead of branding customers as bad borrowers, State Minister for Finance Ajith Nivard Cabraal told the Sunday Times. The aim is to classify borrowers who used to service their debts without defaulting and allow them to get [...]

US-based Rovince to increase investment in Sri Lanka

US-based Rovince  to increase investment in Sri Lanka

Rovince International Corp, a Solid Tyre manufacturer and distributor based in Los Angeles, California and owned and run by Sri Lankans, is increasing by two-fold capacity its Solid Tyre manufacturing plant in Sri Lanka. The company currently operate multiple warehouses in the US and ship to various other countries worldwide. Its Chairman Lionel Perera said [...]

Oil palm ignored as a partner for economic development

Oil palm ignored as a partner for economic development

“Oil Palm cultivation will be banned in Sri Lanka”. This statement made during the throne speech of the President of Sri Lanka who is strongly advocating implementation of national development programmes targeting increasing national production with the objective of achieving a healthy trade balance shocked all the stakeholders of the industry. Obviously, the stakeholders of [...]

MarCom Collective continues to engage stakeholders on rebuilding sector

MarCom Collective continues to engage stakeholders  on rebuilding sector

The MarCom Collective, the industry body comprising eight associations linked to the advertising and marketing communications sectors as well as businesses and professionals associated with them, continued to engage with its members and other stakeholders to bring to light the diverse issues faced by the sectors and how they could work together to address them [...]

New Entrepreneurship Bank to help SMEs and start-ups

A National Entrepreneurship Development Bank is to be established in the country soon to facilitate SMEs and start- ups and discussions are underway in the Central Bank of Sri Lanka in this regard. Meanwhile a plan to introduce a permanent Credit Guarantee Institution is also being discussed to boost domestic growth of industries, said Central [...]

Colombo Port City could be financial hub of South Asia

Sri Lanka would be provided an opportunity to be the financial hub of the South Asian region once the Colombo Port City is in place. In such a situation even if all the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) members available in Sri Lanka are employed there, it would not be enough to man it [...]

SPAR opens new outlet at Pepiliyana

SPAR opens new outlet at Pepiliyana

SPAR Sri Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, a joint partnership between Ceylon Biscuits Ltd and SPAR South Africa, has opened a new 9,500 sq ft store at Pepiliyana, near Nugegoda. This is the company’s fifth store in Sri Lanka as plans for expansion continue to grow. The latest addition to their portfolio features local and imported products, [...]

Tourism industry still reeling from pandemic

The travel and tourism sector continues to wander in crisis mode as another leading travel firm just last month reduced staff by 40 per cent. Unable to hold its head above water in the face of the pandemic the travel firm’s head said: “I had to do it with a heavy heart” adding that “I [...]

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