Columnists

Why FTAs are important for South Asia

Views - 2301 Friday, 11 March 2016 00:00

Over the next few decades, South Asia needs to grow its economies at a much faster pace to eradicate poverty     Often changes in international markets can have a direct, positive or negative, impact on a


A tripartite partnership key for shared prosperity

Views - 2295 Friday, 4 March 2016 00:42

  Given the current political and economic challenges facing Sri Lanka, our political leaders who are committed to economic and social development need to work in collaboration with industry and labour stakeholders to get th


Docs on warpath with Ranil over ETCA: Dialogue is what is required

Views - 3043 Friday, 26 February 2016 00:00

  Many local professional bodies fear Indian professionals would flood Sri Lanka and take away the limited lower middle level jobs. On the other hand the Prime Minister argues that it will pave the way to create a million new jobs


Continuing with our disjointed TVET sector will not solve our skills problem

Views - 2189 Friday, 19 February 2016 00:00

Education, skills development and technical training providers are central to create productive employment opportunities for our young people. They prepare mostly young people for work in the formal and informal sector and thus play an important r


Good government requires leaders to put public good above their personal interests

Views - 2606 Friday, 12 February 2016 00:00

Lee Kuan Yew, the man behind modern Singapore, died at the age of 91, and while many Singaporeans are still mourning the loss of a respected politician, many people all over the world still continue to join them at many international foru


Foreign policy implementation should be led by Foreign Ministry

Views - 2289 Friday, 5 February 2016 00:00

The Sunday Times last Sunday had a headline that said a Committee headed by Charitha Ratwatte, a one-time UNP Chairman, will with immediate effect oversee the working of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA). The committee would be called


Dimmer 2016 for developing countries – or what?

Views - 2355 Friday, 29 January 2016 00:00

The darling of the Davos political and financial elite Christian Lagarde, the current International Monetary Fund’s Managing Director, warned the financial elite in Davos of the risks posed to global economic recovery from the reduction of t


Why we need to do more to attract FDI

Views - 2391 Friday, 22 January 2016 00:00

Sri Lanka in 2015 was way below the budget set for Foreign Direct Investments (FDI). The Government is making a huge effort to attract FDI because today FDI has become the major economic driver of economic growth.  The effort made by the Pr


Will the world economy tank in 2016?

Views - 2475 Friday, 15 January 2016 00:00

In the first two weeks of the year, unlike in the past few years, we saw foreign exchange volatility jump to the most in a month as Chinese stock markets plunged and tensions escalated in the Middle East.  According to Morgan Stanley, swing


Nokia: A lesson in how the high and mighty can fall fast

Views - 3316 Friday, 8 January 2016 00:00

Research suggests that Nokia’s management was certainly aware that a digital revolution was underway, but failed to recognise the increasing importance of software, while overestimating the power of its brand  


Key priorities for 2016 and beyond

Views - 2647 Friday, 1 January 2016 00:00

The people of Sri Lanka on 8 January 2015 made political history. The 8 January election result was clearly a victory for Sri Lankan democracy - a last-minute motley coalition ‘David’ defeated an apparent ‘Goliath’ by doing


People’s expectations post 8 Jan: Opportunity must not be wasted?

Views - 3302 Friday, 18 December 2015 00:00

    Maithripala Sirisena, with the support of Ranil Wickremesinghe’s UNP, the country’s largest political party, won the election on the promise of “Yahapalanaya” or good governance. Ten months hav


Sri Lanka’s HR Challenge; not enough of the right skills and skilled people

Views - 3487 Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

Education and skills attainment in Sri Lanka, which in the early 60s was better than that of countries like Singapore, Malaysia and South Korea, has in the last 20 years fallen behind, undermining the country’s growth prospects. Undoubtedly,


Sustainability of a private sector pension scheme

Views - 9062 Friday, 4 December 2015 00:00

  Last week, many unions and politicians were protesting against the proposed EPF-ETF reforms covering the private sector employees. The proposal was to introduce a mechanism to improve the quality of management of the curren


Making Sri Lanka a knowledge and services hub

Views - 3593 Friday, 20 November 2015 00:00

Education attainment in Sri Lanka, which in the early ’50s and ’60s, maybe up to the mid-70s, was better than that of countries like Malaysia, Singapore or South Korea, has now fallen behind, undermining the country’s growth pros


Restructuring the EPF is vital to protect funds of the workers

Views - 3296 Friday, 13 November 2015 00:00

The unions must realise that Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe is attempting to do a good thing; he is effectively taking the control of the fund away from the Central Bank to an independent body where all stakeholder representatives ca


Leaders vs. Leadership

Views - 2854 Friday, 6 November 2015 00:00

HR Guru Professor Dave Ulrich, Rensis Likert Professor at the Ross School of Business, says in this exclusive interview that an individual leader matters, but an organisation’s leadership matters very much more over time. In this interview,


SMEs critical to get Sri Lanka to the next level of growth

Views - 6887 Friday, 30 October 2015 00:00

The SME sector is an ideal platform for the Government to invest and support to reduce the gap between the haves and the have-nots     All governments want Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), whic


SL should avoid blindly pouring money into public education

Views - 2834 Friday, 23 October 2015 00:00

President Maithripala Sirisena has vowed to increase the current allocation of education in the next Budget. I am sure that he is fully aware that Sri Lanka cannot spend its way out of this education malaise. If this was possible Mahinda Rajapaksa


State interest in SOEs should be in policy and regulation

Views - 3130 Friday, 16 October 2015 00:00

Eran Wickramaratne, the Deputy Minister of Enterprise Development, recently in an interview observed that the Government’s interest in State enterprise should be in policy and regulation.   The general thinking worldwide nowadays


Why the Super Gains Tax should be avoided

Views - 3407 Friday, 9 October 2015 00:00

  In January, the Sri Lankan business community was obviously unhappy with the imposition of the Super Gains Tax (retrospective tax plan) on large companies through the 100-day Government’s Interim Budget and also with


What Sri Lanka needs from now on is inclusive growth

Views - 2704 Friday, 2 October 2015 00:00

The President surely guided by his advisors has gone on record saying that the Government’s main vision now is promoting sustainable development and reconciliation. However, the specific sustainable development goals to be adopted is still n


Acute skills shortage in key sectors could hold Sri Lanka back

Views - 2809 Friday, 25 September 2015 00:00

Annually, the World Economic Forum ranks countries on the Global Competitiveness Index — a decent gauge of which nations are best positioned to squeeze efficiency out of their businesses and attract companies and investment from overseas. Bu


Sri Lanka should take a cue from Ireland on how to attract FDI

Views - 3173 Friday, 18 September 2015 00:00

   One of Sri Lanka’s major rugby promoters in recent times, Malik Samarawickrema, is the new Minister tasked with attracting FDI. He has had international exposure unlike many others previously on the job because of his in


Legislating a minimum wage; practical or what?

Views - 2668 Friday, 11 September 2015 00:00

For years there has been a sense among many unions that the working class is getting left behind, either it is the EPF getting plundered or the wage increases are insufficient, while the rich got richer. With the elections out of the way now the t


Benefits of free trade on income and development

Views - 3056 Monday, 31 August 2015 00:00

 Critics of free trade argue that trade-driven growth benefits only the rich and not the poor. In India, however, after the economic and education reforms, nearly 200 million people have come out of poverty. In China, which grew faster, it is


The role of the regulator is to ensure a strong capital market

Views - 3006 Friday, 21 August 2015 00:29

The role of the regulator in a developed or in a developing market involves developing, implementing and promoting a consistent set of regulation, providing oversight and enforcement in order to protect all investors, maintain fair, efficient and


The expectations from the next government

Views - 2851 Friday, 14 August 2015 05:08

Many right-thinking people watched with alarm and disappointment the steady decline in the moral values of our nation with politics for material benefits overtaking our cherished values. The breakdown of our religious values, traditions and cultur


Towards exports of $ 50 b; doable or what?

Views - 2932 Friday, 7 August 2015 00:00

The Prime Minister addressing the Sri Lanka Economic Summit organised by the Ceylon Chamber under the theme ‘Towards Exports of $ 50 Billion’ said the $ 50 billion is an achievable target, provided there is a systematic approach to exp


A pension for the entire nation; viable or not?

Views - 2822 Friday, 31 July 2015 00:00

  By Dinesh Weerakkody There has been much debate about launching a pension scheme for those who do not get a government pension or do not currently have a provident fund account.  Traditionally the only pension plan


Today's Columnists

Untruth is the crisis

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Political language, said George Orwell, is designed to make lies sound truthful, murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. Dr. Sarath Amunugama is the subject of this essay. In addition to his current incarnation of a p


Rise, Sri Lankans – our country needs you now!

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

I am sick, tired and bloody fed up of reading and listening to pessimistic tales of woe on the unprecedented crisis we and our country are facing at this dark moment in time. I am also fed up to the back teeth with reading and listening to lamentatio


Ranil abused and subverted parliamentary democracy

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

TIME: What was the immediate reason for calling an election? President Kumaratunga: I was forced into it by a total breakdown of cohabitation in Government. The Prime Minister (Ranil Wickremesinghe) was determined to harass me and chase me out. He ha


The Bench must ensure that the judges will continue to be trusted

Monday, 12 November 2018

In the backdrop of the recent developments and the strong arguments that have been presented against the dissolution of Parliament saying the President has no constitutional power to do so, before four and a half years into a Parliamentary term, as s


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