FT View Editorial

Thinking anew on transport 

Views - 5 Saturday, 25 January 2020 00:01

On the heels of curating the songs to be played on buses, the Transport Ministry is now taking complaints of public-owned buses. But for this to be effective, it needs to go beyond safety concerns, though those are important as well.  For a public l

Fixing perceptions

Views - 31 Friday, 24 January 2020 00:00

Corruption being rarely out of the limelight yet is also one of the hardest things to tackle. Conventional wisdom dictates that if something is out in the open and discussed frequently then it should (theoretically) be easier to address. But corrupti

Renewables and growth

Views - 102 Thursday, 23 January 2020 00:00

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa recently went on record saying that the Government aims to generate as much as 80% of Sri Lanka’s power requirement from renewables by 2030. This ambitious target, however, means that the Government will have to make so

Agri quandaries

Views - 56 Wednesday, 22 January 2020 00:35

December inflation has spiked to 6.2% from 4.1% in November, driven largely by high food prices. While higher inflation is expected in festive months, such as Christmas and the Sinhala and Tamil New Year, its disproportional impact on the poor means

Billionaire boom

Views - 167 Tuesday, 21 January 2020 00:00

Has the world outgrown capitalism? Or is there still hope to fix the problems of inequality and excess that have engulfed the system and thrown up fresh challenges? The latest report from Oxfam has shown that the amount of wealth held by the rich con

Investment focus 

Views - 128 Monday, 20 January 2020 01:11

With an eye on Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), the Government has decided to reactivate an Act which gives concessions, including tax exemptions, for 25 years for what it describes as ‘Strategic Development projects of national interest’, the Ca

Spotlight on poverty

Views - 69 Saturday, 18 January 2020 00:01

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has been busy over the last couple of weeks, from making surprise inspection visits to the RMV, National Hospital and Katunayake Airport, to signing off on high-profile appointments to improve key State institutions. Whi

Getting to the root of SME plight

Views - 111 Friday, 17 January 2020 00:00

With Cabinet this week finally approving a much-touted debt relief package for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) with the goal of boosting the economy, it brings to focus the real reason as to why so many SMEs are struggling with loan repayme

Refreshing tourism’s playlist

Views - 143 Thursday, 16 January 2020 00:00

This past week has seen yet another shake-up in the tourism sector, with popular artiste Iraj Weeraratne made a Director of the Board of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB). While many on social media have scoffed at the idea, the move arg

A reminder of Sri Lanka’s unique diversity

Views - 131 Wednesday, 15 January 2020 00:52

With the country today celebrating Thai Pongal, it marks the second public holiday of the year. The Hindu festival is traditionally an occasion for drawing rice-powder based kolam artworks, offering prayers in the home....

Employer of choice

Views - 100 Tuesday, 14 January 2020 00:00

The Government has rolled out plans to recruit 50,000 graduates by March with special training to be given to them before they are absorbed into the public service. There is a concern that this will add to an already bloated Government sector and mak

PCoIs and accountability

Views - 77 Monday, 13 January 2020 09:37

Accountability has generally been an elusive element in Sri Lanka’s governance. When injustice or an illegal activity is believed to have taken on a large scale there is a general public consensus that it needs to be addressed. In this context appo

Funding climate protection

Views - 108 Friday, 10 January 2020 00:00

As Sri Lanka looks to improve its climate protection, funding becomes one of the biggest challenges to overcome. Bridging the funding gap will be crucial to ensuring a sustainable future. Last year, Sri Lanka was categorised as one of the top 10 most

Unemployment and development

Views - 120 Thursday, 9 January 2020 00:00

Unemployment rate rose to a nine-year high of 5.1% in the 3Q of 2019, as a result of disruption caused in the economy after the Easter Sunday Attacks. Increasing unemployment levels could be the main contributor for the wage growth slowdown seen last

Justice and democracy

Views - 128 Wednesday, 8 January 2020 00:00

An independent and impartial judiciary is one of the cornerstones of a democracy. It is therefore deeply disturbing that the law enforcement and Judiciary are in danger of being discredited and side-lined due to political expediency, as seen over the

Privacy as a right

Views - 94 Tuesday, 7 January 2020 00:00

The Government has outlined plans to gather public data under one centre as a way to increase efficiency of the public sector. However without data protection laws there is fear such a centralised population information system can invade people’s p

STEM development

Views - 120 Monday, 6 January 2020 00:00

Parliament was presented a report on Friday, detailing the need to increase the current number of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) student population from the current 38% to 60% by 2030. But in order for this dramatic change t

Respect Parliament

Views - 62 Saturday, 4 January 2020 00:01

Sri Lanka’s Parliament has a long and august history. It has been the bedrock of Sri Lanka’s democracy for decades, and remains integral to ensuring independent institutions, freedoms, and justice for all citizens. It is therefore fitting that th

Supply chains

Views - 82 Friday, 3 January 2020 00:00

Higher food prices are making headlines once again as the public struggles with the repercussions of the heavy rains and floods in December that dampened hopes for a good harvest and better incomes for the agriculture sector. When prices increase, t

Labour potential

Views - 72 Thursday, 2 January 2020 02:02

Economic growth is deeply tied to employment and productivity. According to a recent survey by the Census and Statistics Department, Sri Lanka had an estimated 200,000 unutilised labour potential as an economically inactive group. This group, despite

Doing change right

Views - 82 Wednesday, 1 January 2020 00:00

The beginning of a new year is special, but the beginning of a new decade is even more important. Sri Lanka is on the threshold of a time that can change it forever, making it supremely important to get priorities right and to ensure they are achieve

Facing the music

Views - 68 Tuesday, 31 December 2019 00:54

The Government will distribute a playlist comprising a thousand songs to bus drivers today and also restrict the sound level of music on buses with a hotline launched to gather public complaints. The move, which was announced recently, gathered pace

Investment focus

Views - 124 Monday, 30 December 2019 00:52

The Government has announced that it is kicking off its investment record with a $250 million mixed development project that has already received Cabinet approval. This is a positive step as Sri Lanka is in dire need of more investment and exports to

Respect and the public service

Views - 90 Saturday, 28 December 2019 00:01

The public sector is a much-derided segment in Sri Lanka. This is partly because they provide such vital services, it is essential to interact with them as citizens. Whether it is registering a birth, educating a child, getting married, reporting a c

Comprehensive education

Views - 90 Friday, 27 December 2019 00:00

Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) is part of education. CSE is a curriculum-based process of teaching and learning about the cognitive, emotional, physical and social aspects of sexuality. It aims to equip children and young people with knowled

Christmas hopes

Views - 66 Wednesday, 25 December 2019 00:09

Christmas Day is looked forward to by all Sri Lankans as a universal celebration. This year, Christmas arrives after a long year of political turmoil and change, with the country still somewhat in transition as the new President and administration se

Birth of Jesus: Where are we?

Views - 71 Wednesday, 25 December 2019 00:04

Oh Mary, Joseph and Shepherds, Birth of Jesus was good news for you all. Because you all had to pay a cost to experience a bright future for your community.

Funding care

Views - 53 Tuesday, 24 December 2019 00:00

An Oxford University student whose brother and sister died in the Easter Sunday attacks in Sri Lanka has raised £ 350,000 for the country’s health service. The aim is to equip local hospitals to better deal with emergencies. There is no doubt thi

Tracking growth 

Views - 94 Monday, 23 December 2019 00:57

The economy grew by 2.7% in the third quarter of 2019, the Census and Statistics Department said last week, indicating Sri Lanka is recovering somewhat from the Easter Sunday attacks that slashed the previous quarter growth to a five-year low of 1.6%

Redefining literacy 

Views - 76 Saturday, 21 December 2019 00:17

Literacy was not too long ago defined as being able to read and write. But in order to empower people, digital and financial literacy has now become the benchmark.

Today's Columnists

Forensic Audits part of bond scam cover-up

Saturday, 25 January 2020

From the time the bond scam was carried out by the Ranil Wickremesinghe administration, that administration under the guidance of the former Prime Minister had been avoiding the law by regularly bringing up various distractions so that the true natur

Halting mega projects is untimely; Govt. can explore other options

Friday, 24 January 2020

In a Sunday newspaper on 5 January a news item titled ‘Mega projects on hold until August budget,’ ‘Drop in revenue after tax reductions prevents spending on major constructions,’ was not a development-friendly headline. It may be accurate o

Is any further expenditure on the Port City a waste of money?

Friday, 24 January 2020

Erase from the mind all that you have read and heard about it. Then take a blank piece of paper, draw an irregular circle, and draw a line to divide it into two. On the bottom half write 300 acres. That is our Port City! To get the size into a proper

Foundations of incivility

Friday, 24 January 2020

The lack of advanced political consciousness and democratic discipline can be considered as one of the main reasons for the crisis and the failure that Sri Lanka is facing. This can be considered a situation that has prevailed since independence. Sri

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