Saturday 19th April 2014

Reforms in shipping economy will bring in transparency and accountability to shipping lines and service providers

Published : 12:01 am  December 17, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS  |  Leave a Comment  |  834 views  |  
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Will bring in clarity to lines invoicing and increase profits Unethical parties will be exposed Exporters will be competitive and consumers will benefit Will provide greater strength for a shipping hub as a transparent  location to do business A recent article that appeared in the news seems to confuse the public and tries justifying a non-market driven policy and an unethical practice. The article appeared on Monday 2 December 2013 in the Daily FT under the heading “Shipping lines raise concern over 2014 budget move on THC, say set back on hub aspiration”. I wish to respond to the unnamed author or the shipping line who wrote the article as it attempts to distort public opinion by manipulating... 

Sins against synergy

Published : 12:01 am  December 17, 2013  |  Category: Ajantha Dharmasiri  |  Leave a Comment  |  402 views  |  
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Teams are in high demand. In the worlds of sporting and business alike, this is the case. What is so special in a team? What derails team success? Today’s column will shed light in dealing with the magical factor in teams, synergy. Overview Why teams? Can’t people work as individuals and achieve results? Let’s take a situation. Imagine one’s house is on fire. Father does one thing in panic, and the mother does something totally different, also in panic. The son and daughter are thoroughly confused and just running around. Obviously, the house cannot be salvaged. That has to be a coordinated effort. That’s why teams are essential in facing turbulence. Teams and groups are often interchangeably... 

Mandela and leadership: Lessons for every business and government leader

Published : 12:30 am  December 14, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS  |  3 Comments  |  726 views  |  
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Former South African President and one of the greatest moral leaders of our age has left us. In addition to leading the ant-apartheid struggle in South Africa, his only real qualification was that he was in jail for 27 years! Once set free, the first thing he did was forgive those who imprisoned him and begin the process of reconciliation between the minority white population and the majority black population. What lessons can every leader in business and government learn from him? Here are some. Lessons for leaders Leaders must lead by example. If this does not happen, leadership development efforts will either fail or not deliver the desired results. Never make a promise you cannot keep. Sometimes... 

‘Bali Package’: WTO finally delivers

Published : 12:00 am  December 13, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS, Manel de Silva  |  Leave a Comment  |  831 views  |  
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WTO officials would have heaved a sigh of relief at the last minute developments at the WTO Ministerial Conference held in Bali, which was scheduled to end on 6 December, but extended for another day, which saw a deal being struck at last. Called the ‘Bali Package,’ agreement was reached on a package of issues designed to streamline trade, allow developing countries more options for providing food security, boost least developed countries’ trade and help development more generally. The package also includes a political commitment to reduce export subsidies in agriculture, keep them at low levels and to reduce obstacles to trade when agricultural products are imported through quotas. The... 

Central Bank’s role in building capacity in banks should be commended

Published : 12:00 am  December 13, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS, Dinesh Weerakkody  |  Leave a Comment  |  775 views  |  
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The Central Bank’s initiative to assist commercial banks to achieve high standards of personal and organisational performance by conducting regular bank directors’ symposiums to educate bank directors is one of those ‘best practices’ for corporate governance. It is a great initiative to prepare commercial banks for the long term and also to build a pipeline of directors with the right skills and competencies to strengthen the banks’ resilience to meet current and future challenges and also to help banks to play their role as national economic enablers. The Central Bank being proactive without being reactive in the area of director education is good for the banking system and also for... 

Who is that girl in a new bikini?

Published : 12:00 am  December 13, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS  |  2 Comments  |  1,177 views  |  
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“Pakistan is not alone in its powerlessness. South Asia as a whole is running on empty – insufficient investment, poor planning and corruption dog the regions power sector… Each country’s factors are different: a massive unresponsive bureaucracy in India, a fast growing population in Bangladesh; war in Afghanistan; old technology in Nepal…” – Time Magazine, October 2013. Although the above analysis is particularly in reference to the energy sector, it nevertheless holds good for most sectors of the South Asian economies. Their path towards development is scattered with daunting obstacles some of which like capital shortages and deep-rooted systemic weaknesses seemingly insurmountable. ... 

Justification of creating a specialised bank to empower migrant workers

Published : 12:00 am  December 13, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS  |  1 Comment  |  1,287 views  |  
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Migrant worker remittances are a staggering US$ 500 b business globally Currently the global migrant worker remittance stands at a staggering US$ 420 billion and will go up to US$ 700 billion by the year 2016. Mostly over 220 million international migrant workers who live and work outside their country of birth remit this money annually to their families in the developing countries. There are many studies done, many reports written, many discussions taken place at various international forums yet the global migrant worker community in the countries of their work as well as their dependent families at home stand less empowered economically, and most often the migrant worker community remain in... 

Mandela: Whose hero?

Published : 12:55 am  December 12, 2013  |  Category: COLUMNS, Dharisha Bastians  |  6 Comments  |  1,430 views  |  
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“It took a man like Madiba to free not just the prisoner, but the jailer as well” – US President Barack Obama   The Sri Lankan Government is taking some aspects of its role a Chair in Office of the Commonwealth of Nations very seriously. President Mahinda Rajapaksa for instance, embracing his dual role as President of the Republic and Commonwealth Chair, issued not one but two messages of condolence to South African President Jacob Zuma on the passing of the world’s most beloved statesman and freedom fighter, Nelson Mandela. The first message was a short, official communiqué, released by President Rajapaksa in his capacity as Chair of the Commonwealth. In the second more personalised... 

Budget and Opposition under attack as Lalkantha opens fire

Published : 12:00 am  December 11, 2013  |  Category: Chamitha Kuruppu, COLUMNS  |  2 Comments  |  795 views  |  

Despite all the hardship and misery people go through, they will vote for Mahinda Rajapaksa if he decides to contest tomorrow, says K.D. Lalkantha, Chief Ministerial Candidate for the Western Province. Lalkantha admits that due to the failure of the Opposition to win over voters, people continue to hail the Rajapaksa administration. While pointing out there is a mismatch between the actual desires of the people and policies of the JVP, he claims that if his party had a massive vote base like the UNP, it would have toppled the present regime by now. Lalkantha is a member of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna Political Wing and also functions as President of the National Trade Union Centre (NTUC) and... 

Corporate philanthropy

Published : 12:00 am  December 10, 2013  |  Category: Charitha Ratwatte, COLUMNS  |  Leave a Comment  |  737 views  |  

 Applying business acumen to CSR The impact of corporate philanthropy is usually measured by a head count of the number of persons who are assisted by a particular social or financial development intervention of a charitable nature by a business enterprise. It is usually defined in contrast to various shared or blended value approaches to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in which corporates seek to do well by doing good. However, a different approach is being promoted by the Committee for Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP), currently chaired by Doug Conant, one time longstanding (for over a decade) CEO of the Campbell Soup Company. CECP had advanced the view that corporate philanthropy... 

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