FT View

Economic freedom

Views - 22 Tuesday, 21 August 2018 00:00

The proposal to limit the age of three-wheeler drivers to 35 or above is a serious breach of economic freedom and could actually adversely affect the economy of average people and the standard of life of poorer classes that would be detrimental to su


Placate or stand firm?

Views - 16 Monday, 20 August 2018 00:00

This week opens with the Government staring down the barrel of a second possible train strike with powerful railway trade unions unless their salary demands are met by Thursday.


Investor impressions

Views - 53 Saturday, 18 August 2018 00:10

What makes a country attractive to foreign investors? The list is likely to be exhaustive but local companies investing in Bangladesh would say it is friendly bureaucrats. When Bangladesh hits Sri L


Salaries commission

Views - 45 Friday, 17 August 2018 00:10

Following strikes by powerful trade unions the Government has decided to appoint a salaries commission that would be tasked with evaluating the salary structures of the entire public sector and recommend reforms t


Outsiders and politics

Views - 31 Thursday, 16 August 2018 00:00

For weeks, political circles were abuzz with speculation that cricketer Kumar Sangakkara may enter politics. Even though he has categorically dismissed such an event, the discussions surrounding his potential invitation to run for office gives an int


Prison reform

Views - 22 Wednesday, 15 August 2018 00:10

Welikada prison has become the scene of repeated protests by women, with the latest edition being played out on Monday when a group clambered onto the roof to protest living conditions, and delays in court hearings. Subsequent clashes resulted in fou


Public interest

Views - 30 Tuesday, 14 August 2018 00:00

People vote for politicians, but rarely like them. Recently politicians at both Government and Provincial level have become the target of public censure for mishandling public funds. They have been heavily criticised for discussing a possible salary


PC polls 

Views - 20 Monday, 13 August 2018 01:01

Fresh discussions have emerged between political parties attempting to hold Provincial Council elections. The UNP, TNA and Joint Opposition have expressed their desire to hold polls, and continued discussion would hopefully foster a constructive disc


Equal opportunity

Views - 29 Saturday, 11 August 2018 01:53

The ‘Top 50’ Professional and Career Women Awards 2018 celebrated this week showcased remarkable women leaders from Sri Lanka recognised for their significant contributions within their corporations, communities, or livelihoods.


Meeting targets

Views - 19 Friday, 10 August 2018 00:10

Development is the responsibility of all governments, but achieving it often becomes a challenge for many of them. Almost half of the Government’s development projects and programs managed under 47 line ministries have not reached even 50% of quart


Trade unions and public interest

Views - 60 Thursday, 9 August 2018 00:00

Trade unions are an important facet of democracy, but in Sri Lanka they evoke mixed feelings, as the public views them as both protectors of labour rights and self-serving organisations that have stopped considering the public’s welfare. A lightnin


Protecting migrant workers

Views - 49 Wednesday, 8 August 2018 00:00

Exploitation comes in many forms. During the first seven months of 2018 the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment


Medical justice

Views - 73 Tuesday, 7 August 2018 00:10

Last Friday, public medical services around the country came to a standstill after the Government Medical Officers Association (GMOA) went on a token strike. The list of demands included reducing taxes for doctors and increasing allowances. Strikes h


MPs of value

Views - 44 Monday, 6 August 2018 00:00

When the topic of raising salaries for parliamentarians rolls around every couple of years the livid public response is a stark reflection of how derided the public’s representatives are by the very people who vote them into power.


Managing State assets

Views - 79 Saturday, 4 August 2018 00:10

Selling State assets, even when they are loss-making, is an extremely contentious issue in many countries. Sri Lanka, with its high debts and limited revenue earning measures, has had to take a hard look at increasing th


Vehicle matters

Views - 117 Friday, 3 August 2018 00:00

Buying a car is a difficult task for the average Sri Lankan. Given Sri Lanka’s high debt and low exports, any spike in vehicle


Parting politics and public service

Views - 33 Thursday, 2 August 2018 00:00

The Government has released a new circular holding heads of State institutions, including ministry secretaries, department heads, and even accountants responsible for paying for employees that have been recruited beyond the approved public sector cad


Dealing with ragging

Views - 54 Wednesday, 1 August 2018 00:00

All police stations have been placed on alert to take action on complaints made by students who have been ragged.


Getting stakeholders involved

Views - 44 Tuesday, 31 July 2018 00:00

Over the last few years, the world has been moving to zero-waste shops, supermarkets have been rejecting plastic and a mini-international war has been declared on plastic straws. But, in Sri Lanka, the changes feel more cosmetic than genuinely effect


Combating cheating

Views - 56 Monday, 30 July 2018 00:00

The Examinations Department has decided to seek the assistance of the Army to jam mobile signals at Advanced Level exam centres this year to minimise cheating. As technology adapts faster, how can Sri Lanka’s education authorities tackle these chal


SOEs responsibility

Views - 34 Friday, 27 July 2018 00:00

Strikes are part and parcel of living in Sri Lanka, but there are times when this democratic tool is misused by State employees


Knowhow before credit

Views - 42 Thursday, 26 July 2018 00:00

The Finance Ministry this week received Cabinet approval to roll out a massive absorption of microfinance debt, covering thousands of women in 12 drought-affected districts, primarily in the North and North Central Provinces. The Treasury is to alloc


Reducing indebtness

Views - 66 Tuesday, 24 July 2018 00:00

The Government over the weekend rolled out a microfinance relief campaign that aims to repay billions worth of loans and waive expensive interest payments to reduce indebtedness in the north. Successive governments from time to time have resorted to


Education access

Views - 50 Tuesday, 24 July 2018 00:00

Education reform is seen as a critical element to pushing forward Sri Lanka’s development and economic growth. However


Milk muddle

Views - 76 Monday, 23 July 2018 00:00

The dairy industry is one of the most protected sectors in Sri Lanka, but even after decades of public funds, it remains one of the least efficient and most contentious segments of the economy.


Liberalisation and jobs

Views - 49 Saturday, 21 July 2018 00:10

As Sri Lanka gears up to improve exports and investment, launching a five-year National Export Strategy this week, the private sector has raised concerns about labour shortages and policies to tackle the issue.


Sensible public recruitment

Views - 41 Friday, 20 July 2018 00:00

The Government has announced plans to employ over 57,000 unemployed graduates by the end of next year, which


Reskilling workers

Views - 61 Thursday, 19 July 2018 00:00

International Trade and Development Strategies Minister Malik Samarawickrama told Parliament this week that the Government would introduce Trade Adjustment Packages (TAP) to cover new machinery and skills retraining for workers of companies that woul


Agriculture reform

Views - 103 Wednesday, 18 July 2018 00:00

In the first quarter of 2018 the overall economy grew by 3.2% but agricultural activities expanded by 4.8%. The agriculture sector,


Expanding exports

Views - 74 Tuesday, 17 July 2018 00:00

Exports and investment are critical to a developing economy, and the Government has staunchly backed them with the National Export Strategy (NES) to be rolled out this week. But it is important to look at the red tape that may be hampering exporters


Today's Columnists

Identifying traitors: I cannot wait until Dr. Padeniya presents his point scheme

Tuesday, 21 August 2018

Cause for excitement I am excited! A way of identifying and measuring a traitor is soon to be unveiled; by no less than the President of the GMOA! Hasn’t he also qualified in some department of neurology? All the more reason to justify my excitemen


The evils of translocating wild elephants

Tuesday, 21 August 2018

The subject of translocating wild elephants has been a much-debated topic recently, after the Department of Wildlife Conservation (DWLC), acting on the orders of the Minster for Wildlife, wanted to move the only two wild elephants habituating the Sin


Climate scientists cheating us to a $ 12 b/year economic loss in 2050

Monday, 20 August 2018

Local news media carried the disturbing pronouncement by World Bank economists to the effect that Sri Lanka will become an extremely hot territory with 30C temperature rise and $ 12 billion per year economic loss by 2050.


Singapore miracle – How SL could benefit from trade with Singapore

Monday, 20 August 2018

According to a media report released by President’s Media Division, a committee of experts has been appointed by the President to examine and report on ‘the practical impact and use of the proposed officer policy guidelines and recommendations on


Columnists More