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New mini supermarkets

New mini supermarkets

Government introduces new taxes to raise revenue

Regaining the targeted tax revenue for 2021 has become a herculean task in the prevailing economic conditions triggered by the COVID-19 second wave which seems like never  ending, several economic experts and financial analyst said. But the government is determined to turn the tide to a satisfactory level by introducing a new tax structure for [...]

Hotels in Sri Lanka want closure on opening up

Sri Lanka is among the fewer 52 countries in the world that has not yet revived its tourism industry with some of the smaller hotels closed and over 500,000 workers still reeling from the toll of COVID-19. Following a meeting of the UNWTO Ethics Committee meeting that Jetwing Chairman Hiran Cooray attended on Thursday virtually, [...]

Colombo Port limping back to normalcy

Exporters and the shipping industry this week stated that the congestion at the Colombo Port continued and vessels were re-routing to other regional ports as authorities fought hard to bring operations back to normal. Though labour turnout has improved, operations at the Jaya Container Terminal (JCT) are  still with about 15 of the 20 cranes; [...]

Coconut industry undergoes structural reforms

Sri Lanka’s coconut industry is to undergo structural reforms harnessing the economic potential with incentives provided in the Budget 2021, industry sources said. The four existing institutions related to coconut industry will amalgamated to form a single entity as the “Coconut Cultivation and Allied Industries Development Authority” under an integrated institutional structure. This will be [...]

ACap in talks with Japanese shareholders to settle legal battles

Malaysian businessman, founder of the controversial multilevel marketing scheme GoldQuest (GQ) and Asia Capital PLC’s(ACap) 72 per cent shareholder, Vijay Eswaran’s team is in discussion with the company’s Japanese shareholders to settle a host of law suits, officials said. Mr. Eswaran had also approached a major finance company in Colombo to pledge his stake in [...]

CB wants more ‘RegTech’ products

Amidst the many fintech products in the market and awaiting approval, the Central Bank (CB)’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) is unhappy that there aren’t RegTech (short for Regulatory Technology) products to improve the way businesses manage regulatory compliance. RegTech solutions enable the delivery of regulatory requirements more proficiently and effectively than fintech, a CB official [...]

Relying on local expertise

Relying on local expertise

A video where a 79-year-old veteran engineer addresses a meeting chaired by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, discussing how Sri Lankan engineers are able to handle development work at much lower the cost charged by foreign contractors, is doing the rounds on social media. Reading from a document (a copy of which was handed over to the [...]

Budgeting in troubled waters

Budgeting in troubled waters

In an economic recession, governments act differently. The proponents of a bigger role expected from the government will have a comfortable time to be convinced in what they believe in. Equally important is that the opponents of such a strategy will have a hard time to get their points across with conviction. These opposing views [...]

Budget highlights fiscal challenges, may not significantly boost growth –Moody’s

Despite the growth focus of Sri Lanka’s 2021 budget, it is unlikely to provide a meaningful boost to output, while increased spending will add to fiscal pressures, which is credit negative, Moody’s, a global rating agency, said in a statement this week. The budget targets a 2021 fiscal deficit of 8.8 per cent of GDP, [...]

Commercial Bank adds QR code to credit card statements

The Commercial Bank of Ceylon says it is the first bank in Sri Lanka to enable its credit card holders to conveniently and instantly settle their credit card outstanding by scanning a QR code appearing on their monthly credit card statements. The bank has announced, in a media release, that it is now printing a [...]

EPF Act amendment to extend the retirement age brings hidden issues into the limelight

The government’s proposal to amend the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) Act to extend the retirement age of private sector employees both men and women up to 60 years has brought several crucial issues into the limelight. Finance Minister and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaska in his 2021 budget speech said the retirement age of private sector [...]

Retrieving SL’s economy from the mud

Retrieving  SL’s economy from the mud

Our economy is in deep trouble. Even before COVID, foreign reserves had dwindled, deficits have skyrocketed and our debt burden was nearing 100 per cent of our meagre GDP. In 2019 President Gotabaya Rajapaksa walked into this fiscal crisis. And unwisely, he gave a hasty and massive tax cut that blew a hole in the [...]

First DoubleTree by Hilton Resort opens in Weerawila

First DoubleTree by Hilton Resort opens in Weerawila

Hilton Hotels this week announced the opening of DoubleTree by Hilton Weerawila Rajawarna Resort, a new three-storey, 78-room modern resort in Weerawila, Sri Lanka. The newly-built resort is owned by KDU Adventures (Pvt) Ltd and joins Hilton Colombo and Hilton Colombo Residences as the third hotel to be managed by Hilton in the country. Located [...]

European ride-hail Bolt comes to Sri Lanka

Bolt, a leading European transportation platform committed to make urban travel easier, quicker and more reliable; announced its entry to the Sri Lankan market, with a pilot launch of its service in Colombo, on November 25 with over 2000 drivers ready to start accepting rides. Bolt pilots its services in South Asia for the first [...]

Tokyo Cement expands investment

Tokyo Cement Company (Lanka) PLC recently entered into an investment expansion agreement with the BOI, reflecting its “appreciation towards the Government’s farsighted decision to encourage the local manufacturing sector”. The company recently announced plans to increase local production capacity by a further 1 million Metric Tons with an investment of US$12 million, it said in [...]

Success for Sri Lanka Tourism’s Wildlife Streaming event “Couch Safari’

The first ever initiative of Sri Lanka Tourism’s (SLT) effort in showcasing the island’s wildlife to the world through streaming technology has been an unprecedented success with the support of the stakeholders, partners and wildlife enthusiasts from all over the world. The event was backed by Sri Lanka Tourism’s largest online marketing initiative in the [...]

Sri Lanka’s inflation well anchored, low interest housing loans for employees

Sri Lanka’s economic growth is expected to bounce back from 1.7 per cent contraction this year with inflation well anchored, Central Bank (CB) Governor Prof.W D Lakshman asserted on Thursday. He was speaking at the monetary policy review press briefing for the first time via online after COVID-19 hit a CB employee but its operations [...]

$250 m state-of-the-art Tyre plant to open in Jan. 2020

$250 m state-of-the-art Tyre plant to open in Jan. 2020

Rigid Tyre Corporation (Pvt) Ltd built with an investment of US$250 million is scheduled to open in mid-January 2021. The construction of Phase 1 with an investment of $100 million has been completed while Phase 2 will be completed by mid-March 2022, the company said in a media release. The landmark project is the first [...]

New UDA regulations seen detrimental to development

The Urban Development Authority (UDA) is seen as taking land, planning and building laws into its hands via the introduction of new regulations, drawing concern from professionals and public interest activists. The Sri Lanka Engineers Institution (SLEI) strongly objected last week to the attempts made by UDA to gazette these regulations without entertaining representations from [...]

SL Tourism Alliance, Good Life X offer 50,000 EUR to support SMEs

With Sri Lanka’s tourism industry grappling to stay afloat amidst the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are scrambling to find ways to remain competitive and resilient. Assisting the entire industry and especially the SMEs has been a priority initiative for the Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance during these unprecedented times. “Our partnership [...]

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