University of Peradeniya: A treasure of beauty and wisdom

Published : 12:00 am  May 8, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, Youth / Careers / Higher Education  |  3 Comments  |  1,008 views  |  
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Exactly 40 years ago on a day like today (8 May), I was over the moon enjoying the very first day of my entrance to the University of Ceylon Peradeniya. I still remember the day of my arrival with my parents at Peradeniya Sarasavi Uyana Railway Station, a reminiscent construction by colonial rule in Sri Lanka. No words can express the radiance of the blooming May flowers and beauty of birdsong that portrayed a symbol of warm welcome to the new entrants. All the beginners who arrived in numbers were received by the seniors with warm cordiality. It was obligatory for freshmen to be clad in white during the first two or three weeks and opted to use our own choice of dress later. The academic course... 

Rescuing the minds of Sri Lankans!

Published : 12:00 am  May 8, 2014  |  Category: Ajith de Alwis, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  690 views  |  
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    In my last column I wrote about the importance of knocking the ‘t’ off ‘can’t’. The theme needs to be continued. The message needs to be reiterated again and again – of course it is the practice that will demonstrate impact. Late Munidasa Cumarathunga who is a great Sinhala scholar and a linguist through one of his verses penned a remarkable comment which the world today amply bears evidence. He stated quite simply that ‘The Nation which does not create new things will not rise!’ Have we taken heed of such wise statements? Sadly the answer is no. There are no bounds to our appreciation for new and modern things, but it is the interest in creating new things that... 

“Counter diaspora influence with strong domestic process”: EU Ambassador

Published : 12:00 am  May 8, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, Dharisha Bastians, Opinion  |  3 Comments  |  1,718 views  |  
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Head of the European Union Delegation to Sri Lanka, Ambassador David Daly, speaks to the Daily FT about the bloc’s motivations to rigorously pursue accountability, the promotion of human rights and reconciliation in Sri Lanka, underscoring the need for the Sri Lankan Government to treat the actions at the UN Human Rights Council with the seriousness it deserves. Following are excerpts:   Q: What has the EU’s role been in post-war Sri Lanka? A: We have been heavily involved in the post-conflict situation and the post-tsunami situation, with humanitarian aid. We have been shifting our aid program progressively from humanitarian aid, to post conflict, to normal development. We are building... 

Rethinking FDI strategy

Published : 12:00 am  May 7, 2014  |  Category: Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  640 views  |  
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Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is an effort at investing in a business of a target country either by expanding business operations of an investor either in a new/existing production or by making a deal either to merge or acquire the assets/equity of another company in a target country. FDIs do normally come in four categories such as extracting natural resources, infrastructure, and manufacturing and in services. All these investment decisions and transactions do require business sense as investors do their basic mathematics and logic taking into account the business environment, the market, financial and tax incentives, labour productivity, repatriation of profits and other social and political... 

Pathana continue unbeaten run

Published : 12:39 am  May 6, 2014  |  Category: Arthur Fernandez, Columnists  |  Leave a Comment  |  603 views  |  
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School rugby Despite the bad weather we had some good school games over the weekend. Pathana continues to impress with their style of play. Last Friday they took on the Joes in pretty wet and gloomy conditions. The ground was soggy and the same was not conducive for fast and open rugby. However both teams must be given credit for the quality of rugby that was dished out. They were willing to run the ball at every opportunity and the resultant thrills and spills was on view. The pathana pack is quite a dominant force in local schools rugby and they are mobile and agile. They definitely rely on their third row for the bulk of their attacking moves and together with their effervescent No. 9 they... 

The federalisation of Ukraine

Published : 12:22 am  May 6, 2014  |  Category: Charitha Ratwatte, Opinion  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,240 views  |  
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A comparison with Sri Lanka and India Russia moved in its troops, without any national, formation or regimental markings on their uniforms, mounted on Russian vehicles and bearing state-of-the-art Russian weapons and communication equipment, into the Southern Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea and rapidly annexed the region into the Russian Federation. The United Nations General Assembly condemned the move, and at the UN Security Council, Russia vetoed a Resolution condemning the move. China abstained from voting in the Security Council. While the troops were in place in Crimea, a referendum was conducted in which the majority of Crimeans voted to join the Russian Federation. Slights to the status... 

Should Sri Lanka stage the Asian Youth Games 2017?

Published : 12:18 am  May 6, 2014  |  Category: Rohantha Athukorala  |  Leave a Comment  |  635 views  |  
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I was surprised to read in yesterday’s media that Sri Lanka is in danger of losing the rights of hosting the Asian Youth Games 2017. If we track back around two years back, Sri Lanka convinced the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) that Sri Lanka wished to stage the games in Hambantota so that we could showcase to the world the country’s infrastructure facilities, together with the opportunities the world has to connect to an economy that the ADB and World Bank predict will grow at 7.4% and 7.3% respectively in 2014/15. Progress after 1½ years The report says that based on the fact-finding mission by Wei Jizhog, the Life Vice President of Olympic Council of Asia in March 2014, their concluding... 

Now 24,000 TEU container ships

Published : 12:00 am  May 5, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, Shipping / Aviation  |  Leave a Comment  |  1,833 views  |  
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Now 24,000 TEU container ships Dr. Klein, the former Head of Germanischer Lloyd and one of the first in the world to predict the arrival of 18,000 TEU ships, anticipates that container ships will eventually exceed 400m in length and will go beyond 19,000 TEU. “There is no technical limitation,” he said. But first, the ports need to be ready to handle the next generation of container ships. Although ship designers have been talking about vessels with a capacity up to 24,000 TEU, indications are that shipping lines were not looking beyond 19,000 TEU vessels as at present. At the moment, the biggest ships in the pipeline are for China shipping, with CSCL Globe due for delivery in November reported... 

Woman with the Buddha tattoo: Much more economics in episode than religious sentiments

Published : 12:00 am  May 5, 2014  |  Category: Columnists, Opinion, W. A. Wijewardena  |  11 Comments  |  4,161 views  |  
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An apology to the deported woman by tourism authorities Two weeks ago, a British woman tourist sporting a tattoo of the meditating Buddha on her upper arm was deported from Sri Lanka on the orders of the courts. Interestingly, the order had been sought from the courts not by the Tourist Police or the Immigration Authorities but by the ordinary Police. According to reports, the learned magistrate had delivered the order of deportation on the ground that her presence in the country will hurt the religious sentiments of the majority faith in the country. The judgment, one may ponder, would have been made to avert two disasters: save the tourist from possible attacks by the enraged Buddhists and... 

Mergers and acquisitions are not the same!

Published : 12:00 am  May 5, 2014  |  Category: Financial Services, Hilmy Cader  |  Leave a Comment  |  828 views  |  

The misinterpretation of the HNB MD’s comment at the MTI Banking Forum demonstrates the widespread confusion regards mergers and acquisitions, which are two distinct approaches of inorganic growth for a business.   Acquisition, as the name implies, is when a business is bought over by another business – such as a bank acquiring a finance company. Having acquired it, the acquirer has the option of treating it as a subsidiary (and letting it operate as it is) or actively integrating the two organisational structures – which is referred to as a merger. Purely as an example, if Malaysian Airlines (a legacy airline) decide to acquire Air Asia (a budget airline), it may not be commercially prudent... 

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