Columnists

Trade and FDI needs a one-stop-shop, not one more stop

Views - 3058 Friday, 22 July 2016 00:00

Apple CEO Tim Cook at Apple’s office in Ireland. Apple has publicly stated that it wants to significantly expand its operations in Ireland Many foreign investors I engage with want Sri Lanka to emulate Ireland, or even Vietn


Nisha Biswal wants Lanka to be the next Singapore

Views - 4008 Friday, 15 July 2016 00:00

 US Assistant Secretary of State Nisha Biswal, currently on her sixth visit in 20 months to Sri Lanka in her current capacity as US Assistant Secretary of State responsible for South and Central Asian Affairs, speaking to a group of senior bu


Ranil must rise to the challenge and deliver before it’s too late

Views - 14909 Friday, 8 July 2016 00:00

  Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe   From April 2004 to 8 January 2015, Ranil Wickremesinghe unlike Maithripala Sirisena had to stay a decade in Opposition, facing many challenges from within the party, includi


Building capacity at board level in the financial sector should be a top priority

Views - 3101 Friday, 1 July 2016 00:15

Given the governance issues in the NBFIs, the regulator’s initiative to assist commercial banks and NBFIs to achieve the highest standards of personal and organisational performance by conducting regular bank directors’ symposiums to e


Our FDI effort needs a makeover

Views - 2731 Friday, 24 June 2016 00:00

 Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe speaking at a press conference in Davos     Today for Sri Lanka to attract investment, we all know we need good institutions favouring economic freedom and the ease of doi


Towards a stable and competitive NBFI sector

Views - 3707 Friday, 17 June 2016 00:00

    The Daily FT reported that the Minister of Finance had proposed to set an upper limit of Rs. 10 million on banks to do leasing business, to which the heads of the commercial banks had protested during their meeting.&n


Why do people run for political office, to serve or to be served?

Views - 3370 Friday, 10 June 2016 00:00

    Dudley Shelton Senanayake (19 June 1911 – 13 April 1973) was the second Prime Minister of Ceylon. Senanayake was an unassuming man who led his people and ruled the country not for his personal benefit but out of


ETCA and FTAs alone cannot attract investors

Views - 2984 Friday, 3 June 2016 00:00

Businessman and National List MP Malik Samarawickrama, a Minister in the current Government who is spearheading the Free Trade Arrangements (FTA) with India, China and now Singapore, stated that all the FTAs in the pipeline would give investors ac


The promise of Yahapalanaya should not get washed away

Views - 3149 Friday, 27 May 2016 00:00

 President Maithripala Sirisena presenting his campaign manifesto to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe where the first-order of priority was clearly the promised anti-corruption probes     On 8 January, nea


Why Sri Lanka needs a national vision and strategy for labour

Views - 2927 Friday, 20 May 2016 00:10

Recently, at a FT-Colombo University forum it was noted that Sri Lanka very badly needs a national vision for labour, backed by funding, realistic targets, an implementation strategy and all the government agencies working together and also far gr


Financial sector needs urgent reforms to achieve Govt. development goals

Views - 3876 Friday, 13 May 2016 00:08

Introduction Banks accept deposits and make loans and derive a profit from the difference in the interest rates paid and charged to depositors and borrowers respectively. The process performed by banks of taking in funds from a depositor and the


Global economic outlook for 2016 not very encouraging

Views - 2602 Saturday, 7 May 2016 00:00

Larry Summers, Charles W. Eliot University Professor and President Emeritus, Harvard University; former Secretary, US Treasury and former Director, National Economic Council, speaking at the CITI pension and endowment conference in New York obser


MS-Ranil Government on firm ground; time to focus on getting things done

Views - 3039 Friday, 29 April 2016 00:00

To those public servants, businessman and politicians sitting on the fence waiting for the unexpected, President Maithripala Sirisena at the breakfast meeting with the editors on Wednesday fired on all cylinders at certain MPs and former President


Lessons from private sector to improve delivery in public service

Views - 2726 Friday, 22 April 2016 00:00

A few weeks back, I spoke to a group of public servants about good HR private sector practices and how some of those people practices can help them to improve productivity in their departments, improve engagement of their staff and also to deliver


Delivering the skills for the tourism sector: Some options

Views - 2875 Friday, 8 April 2016 00:00

The Hotel School that produces most of our graduates and trainees does not have the capacity to deliver the numbers and the talent required for the tourism industry     The tourism industry in Sri Lanka w


Steps to take to ensure a strong capital market

Views - 2995 Friday, 1 April 2016 00:00

Today our capital market could do a lot more to rev up our economy like in some other markets in the region. Market capitalisation to GDP currently is less than 25%; in 2010 it was around 39%. In Singapore it is over 250% and Malaysia 160%. 


Sri Lanka’s debt situation: What are our options?

Views - 6546 Friday, 25 March 2016 00:00

The external financing situation for Sri Lanka is certainly a big worry for both the Government and the private sector. This is largely due to monstrous financial profligacy of the past not yet fully explained. However, it is also due to a large t


Holding our leaders accountable

Views - 3028 Friday, 18 March 2016 00:00

Mihin Lanka as an entity currently owes the State banks billions, a debt that has been outstanding for years with no action being taken by the State institutions to get their money back. The mismanagement of SriLankan Airlines is another


Why FTAs are important for South Asia

Views - 2269 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 - 2271 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 - 3010 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 - 2168 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 - 2569 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 - 2266 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 - 2334 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 - 2313 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 - 2443 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 - 3275 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 - 2598 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 - 3267 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


Today's Columnists

What is more important? Fixing the Constitution or fixing the economy?

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

The Steering Committee of the Constitutional Assembly has produced an Interim Report on six key issues after 73 sessions between April 2016 and September 2017, without basic consensus among the key partners of political party representatives in the C


Top 10 tourist source markets and marketing of Sri Lanka tourism niches

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

The tourism sector is a significant that contribute to the economy of the country. Sri Lanka received over two million arrivals in 2016. This was 14% increase compared to last year 2015. In the case of foreign exchange earnings, Sri Lanka’s earning


The bond robbery and CB’s reputation: Yahapalana Government should stop playing hide and seek

Monday, 16 October 2017

Immediately after the Treasury bond auction on 27 February 2015, the news of a massive impropriety that had taken place in the auction spread across the market like a wildfire.


Robert Knox, different now?

Monday, 16 October 2017

“At their leisure when their affairs will permit, they commonly meet at places built for strangers and way-faring men to lodge in, in their language called Amblomb, where they sit chewing betel, and looking one upon the other very gravely, solidly


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