Columnists

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

Views - 7015 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 - 2848 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 - 3149 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 - 3440 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 - 2720 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 - 2831 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 - 3190 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 - 2678 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 - 3073 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 - 3020 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 - 2864 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 - 2948 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 - 2836 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 - 3259 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 - 2423 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 - 2805 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 - 2527 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 - 2750 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 - 2683 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 - 1680 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 - 1774 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 - 1712 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 - 3400 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 - 805 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 - 939 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 - 994 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 - 1281 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 - 1321 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 - 1145 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 - 856 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


Today's Columnists

Our Cricket Board simply cannot deliver – why not they all quit honourably?

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

“It is necessary, therefore, for the Government to pay serious attention to the doings of Sri Lanka Cricket [board] and take immediate action to lift their game for the progress of our glorious game.” Question for Sri Lanka Cricket (board) Sri La


Yesterday Tamils, today Muslims and tomorrow who?

Tuesday, 18 June 2019

From the time of S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike’s election victory in 1956, one and only one issue had dominated political party campaigns in this country; and that was communalism. The Tamil community was the main focus of these campaigns for over 50 years


Those who go by social proof are easy prey to crafty schemers

Monday, 17 June 2019

Going after social proof Swiss writer and novelist, Rolf Dobelli, in one of the essays in his 2013 book ‘The Art of Thinking Clearly’, has given a fine warning to his readers. He has warned against going by ‘social proof’ or ‘majority view


Poson ponderings on positional power: ‘Authority vested’ vs. ‘authority wasted’

Monday, 17 June 2019

We witnessed a serene Poson Poya, in a far more improved security setting in Sri Lanka. Whilst the Sri Lankan life slowly returning to normal, political fronts do not appear to show the same. Has the political power become the people ‘pava’ (sin)


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