Columnists

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

Views - 3180 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 - 2672 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 - 3064 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 - 3011 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 - 2857 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 - 2938 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 - 2827 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


Strengthening Yahapalanaya in the financial sector

Views - 3245 Friday, 24 July 2015 00:00

The Government decision to pay GK depositors highlights over and over again the need for better regulation, the need to make people accountable and improve governance in the financial sector     The level


Shareholder capitalism needs to be redefined

Views - 2414 Friday, 17 July 2015 00:00

Shareholder value creating is a refreshingly simple construct i.e. companies that grow and earn a return on capital that exceeds their cost of capital, create value.  The 2008 financial crisis is the most recent reminder that when executive


Importance of a National Employment Policy

Views - 2632 Friday, 10 July 2015 00:00

Most countries that adopt a framework for strong, sustainable and balanced growth as the instrument for sustainable growth, acknowledge the role of skills development in that framework, stating that through its own national policies they look to s


Improving competitiveness should be a top priority for the next Government

Views - 2518 Friday, 3 July 2015 00:00

An issue that needs urgent attention is the colossal losses in the State-Owned Enterprises, especially, the top three – CEB, CPC and SriLankan       As a country we have slid from the 6


Restructuring the EPF is a must

Views - 2743 Friday, 26 June 2015 00:34

In 2014 the Government attempted to increase the Employees’ Provident Fund (EPF) contribution for the employer from 12% to 14%. State officials defending the move were quick to point out that in Singapore the employer contributes 16% to th


The private sector must be ready to take advantage of shifts in Government policy

Views - 2673 Friday, 19 June 2015 00:00

    Sri Lanka in the early stage of economic development had excellent education attainment but now lags far behind many middle income and most high-income countries due to low public investment in education. Therefore to


Slamming a no confidence motion on Ranil is unfair

Views - 1667 Wednesday, 10 June 2015 00:00

I launched a book a little over a year ago titled ‘In The Best Interest Of My Country’ and Ranil Wickremesinghe in his speech said a country cannot progress unless you have leaders who have both the passion and competence and he went o


The role of HR in creating a good governance culture

Views - 1755 Friday, 5 June 2015 00:00

I was recently asked to speak about how HR can make a meaningful and a more strategic contribution towards integrating governance into a company’s DNA.  To begin, after the financial crisis, regulators and funds came up with a new bun


For Sri Lanka to move on, it needs a radical change in policy

Views - 1698 Friday, 29 May 2015 00:00

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


SMEs will be critical to sustain our economic growth in next 5 years

Views - 3380 Friday, 15 May 2015 01:21

    Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), which form the backbone of our economy, are expected to play a greater role in the development of our economy in the coming years as the market expands and becomes more compe


The state of our State enterprises

Views - 797 Sunday, 10 May 2015 13:36

Two State enterprises, the National Paper Company and SriLankan Airlines, alone generated a combined loss of Rs. 41 billion from May 2013 to September 2014. Sri Lanka Railways lost another Rs. 5 billion     Sri Lanka’s Pa


The state of our State enterprises

Views - 933 Friday, 8 May 2015 00:00

Two State enterprises, the National Paper Company and SriLankan Airlines, alone generated a combined loss of Rs. 41 billion from May 2013 to September 2014. Sri Lanka Railways lost another Rs. 5 billion     Sri Lanka’s Parlia


Independence for Foreign Service and Public Service through 19A

Views - 988 Friday, 1 May 2015 00:00

The administrative system, adopted and incorporated into Sri Lanka’s first Constitution after independence, suffered serious interference in 1972, when the Civil Service Commission was abolished and most of its functions were passed on to the cabin


The leadership and economic legacy of Lee Kuan Yew

Views - 1276 Friday, 17 April 2015 04:01

In 2011, I listened to Lee Kuan Yew officially launch his book titled ‘Lee Kuan Yew: Hard Truths to Keep Singapore Going’ at the St. Regis, Singapore. He spoke passionately of the need to promote meritocracy. Undoubtedly, his uncompromising stand


The critical recipe for economic prosperity

Views - 1314 Friday, 10 April 2015 00:05

According to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, it is people’s innovativeness, entrepreneurship, and their work ethic that gives a country that sharp edge in competitiveness     Business-savvy Prime Minister Ranil Wickremes


Creating 1 m new jobs

Views - 1139 Friday, 27 March 2015 00:00

For a start, we need to focus our education and training investment primarily to deliver the skills to leverage FDI and regional manpower opportunities     The new Government of President Sirisena in its 100-day program talks o


Government should stay away from running enterprises

Views - 852 Friday, 20 March 2015 00:00

Many public enterprises continue to make big losses and get away with total impunity. For instance, the two transport enterprises, Railways and SLTB, have made operating losses year after year since 2000 amassing cumulative losses of billions of


Private sector and State sector must work together to build future-ready workforce

Views - 1641 Friday, 13 March 2015 01:28

The new Government recently proposed that the spend on education would be increased from 1.3% to 6% in the future. This move is certainly good for the country given that the World Bank South Asia recently reported that the poor quality of education i


Regulator should not get involved in appointing directors to banks

Views - 1116 Friday, 6 March 2015 00:00

By Dinesh Weerakkody Today globally the banking industry is constantly being buffeted by waves of financial, regulatory, technological and operational challenges. The increased regulatory burden and related costs impact every financial institution i


Need for a new labour market strategy

Views - 1118 Friday, 27 February 2015 00:01

Workers in Sri Lanka – File photo     ng countries like Sri Lanka will have to prepare for further downside risks with the growing debt problems and the growth problems in Europe and the slowdown in Asia. Slower growth is alr


Why we need to attract more Foreign Direct Investment

Views - 2920 Friday, 13 February 2015 00:00

Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) have today become the major economic driver of globalisation. The most profound effect has been seen in developing countries where yearly FDI flows have increased. Today, China is at the forefront of FDI growth, follo


One-off Super Gain Tax for biz: Good or bad?

Views - 3727 Friday, 6 February 2015 00:00

    The Sri Lankan business community was obviously unhappy over the imposition of the Super Gain Tax (retrospective tax plan) on large companies through the new Government’s Interim Budget. The biz community was also unhappy w


Banking sector needs reform: Can Ranil and Ravi deliver?

Views - 2513 Friday, 30 January 2015 00:00

The FT on Wednesday highlighted the very divergent views expressed by the Finance Minister and the new Central Bank Governor. The Finance Minister certainly knows the game better than the Governor because he has been a vocal critic of the previous ad


Today's Columnists

MMDA, ACJU, politicians and women

Saturday, 16 February 2019

It is 10 years since Justice Saleem Marsoof (JSM) and his committee was appointed to review and make recommendations to reform the Muslim Marriage and Divorce Act (MMDA), passed originally in 1951 and amended in 1954, 1955, 1965 and 1969 before becom


President Trump looked for the failed idea of a wall

Saturday, 16 February 2019

The talks over the “Wall of Trump” between the US-Mexico Border Security broke down with Congressional leaders over the weekend. After the renewed call for a wall at his second State of the Union, President Donald Trump attended a political rally


‘The Man Who Would Be King’: Remembering Anura Bandaranaike on his 70th birth anniversary

Friday, 15 February 2019

‘The Man Who Would Be King’ is the title of a long tale written by Rudyard Kipling in 1888. This very popular story was made into a successful film starring Sean Connery, Michael Caine and Christopher Plummer by the well-known director John Husto


Of pseudo-democrats, discipline and the coming death of liberty?

Friday, 15 February 2019

I despair of our politicos and would-be politicians. Not that they are not all honourable men. From the honourable prime minister to the former defence secretary discharging his duty honourably after premature retirement! But that honour often dresse


Columnists More