International

Iran says will not tolerate ‘maritime offences’ in Gulf

Views - 13 Tuesday, 6 August 2019 01:54

Dubai (Reuters): Iran runs security in the Strait of Hormuz and will no longer tolerate “maritime offences” there, its foreign minister said on Monday, a day after it seized a second oil tanker near the strategic waterway that it accused of smugg


Thousands resume Hong Kong protests; China media warns Beijing won’t ‘sit idly by’

Views - 14 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

HONG KONG, REUTERS: Thousands of protesters took to Hong Kong’s streets on Sunday, a day after violent clashes between anti-government protesters and police, and as China’s official news agency warned Beijing will not let the situation in the As


Russian police detain over 800 in opposition crackdown in Moscow

Views - 9 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

MOSCOW (Reuters): Russian police forcibly detained over 800 people attending a protest in Moscow on Saturday to demand free elections, including prominent activist Lyubov Sobol, after authorities warned the demonstration was illegal. Police removed


Trump defends stance on China trade after new tariffs

Views - 10 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

WASHINGTON (Reuters): US President Donald Trump said on Saturday that things are going well with China, insisting US consumers are not paying for import taxes he has imposed on goods from that country although economists say Americans are footing the


US says China destabilising Indo-Pacific: Pentagon chief

Views - 12 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

SYDNEY (Reuters): The United States says China is destabilising the Indo-Pacific, US Defence Secretary Mark Esper said on Sunday, charging Beijing with predatory economics, intellectual property theft and “weaponising the global commons”. The com


Millions lose power as Indonesia capital, parts of Java hit by blackout

Views - 12 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

JAKARTA (Reuters): Indonesia’s state power company PLN estimated on Sunday it would take several hours to restore power to Jakarta after a major blackout, blaming technical issues for cutting power to tens of millions of people in the capital and s


29 killed in two US mass shootings within hours

Views - 13 Monday, 5 August 2019 00:00

EL PASO, AFP: Two mass shootings in the United States have left 29 people dead within 24 hours, the latest of such attacks in a nation torn over how to tackle gun violence. A gunman armed with an assault rifle killed 20 people on Saturday when he op


Trump’s tariffs jolt global stocks, spark rush to safer assets

Views - 14 Saturday, 3 August 2019 00:10

TOKYO (Reuters): Global stocks took a beating on Friday, with investors piling into safe-haven assets but oil prices recouped some losses after US President Donald Trump said he would slap a 10% tariff on the remaining $ 300 billion of Chinese import


South Korea says ‘won’t be defeated again’ as Japan trade dispute escalates

Views - 14 Saturday, 3 August 2019 00:05

TOKYO/SEOUL (Reuters): South Korea fired back at Japan over a deepening trade dispute on Friday, pledging it would not be “defeated again” by its neighbour, laying bare decades-old animosity at the root of a row over fast-track export status. Add


China’s capital orders Arabic, Muslim symbols taken down

Views - 15 Saturday, 3 August 2019 00:05

BEIJING (Reuters): Authorities in the Chinese capital have ordered halal restaurants and food stalls to remove Arabic script and symbols associated with Islam from their signs, part of an expanding national effort to ‘Sinicize’ its Muslim populat


Saudi Arabia lifts travel restrictions on women, grants them greater control

Views - 11 Saturday, 3 August 2019 00:05

RIYADH (Reuters): Saudi Arabia has allowed adult women to travel without permission and granted them more control over family matters, further eroding a heavily criticised male guardianship system at a time of heightened scrutiny over its human right


Iran says ready for worst in battle to save nuclear deal amid standoff with US

Views - 10 Saturday, 3 August 2019 00:01

DUBAI (Reuters): President Hassan Rouhani said on Thursday that Iran was ready for the worst in an uphill struggle to salvage its nuclear deal with world powers abandoned by the United States, but that he was sure Tehran would eventually prevail. Fea


Asian factories suffering, more stimulus seen ahead

Views - 13 Friday, 2 August 2019 00:00

HONG KONG (Reuters): Asian factory activity contracted further in July, fuelling worries that a Sino-US trade war and a slowdown in China could tilt the world toward a global recession, which central banks will have to fight with depleted ammunition.


Stronger demand boosts India factory activity in July: PMI

Views - 12 Friday, 2 August 2019 00:00

Reuters: India’s factory activity accelerated in July as domestic demand and output strengthened, encouraging firms to hire at the fastest rate in five months, a private business survey showed on Thursday. The Nikkei Manufacturing Purchasing Manage


OPEC oil output hits lowest since 2011 on Saudi cut, sanctions: Reuters survey

Views - 17 Friday, 2 August 2019 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): OPEC oil output hit an eight-year low in July as a further voluntary cut by top exporter Saudi Arabia deepened losses caused by US sanctions on Iran and outages elsewhere in the group, a Reuters survey found. The 14-member Organizat


Britain to spend an extra $2.6 billion on no-deal Brexit planning

Views - 18 Friday, 2 August 2019 00:00

London (Reuters): Britain said it is ramping up preparations for a no-deal Brexit by spending an extra 2.1 billion pounds ($2.6 billion) to stockpile medicines, hire more border officials and fund one of the biggest peacetime advertising campaigns. P


Indian Parliament votes to outlaw ‘triple talaq’

Views - 14 Thursday, 1 August 2019 00:00

NEW DELHI (Reuters): The parliament approved a bill on Tuesday outlawing the centuries-old right of a Muslim man to instantly divorce his wife, drawing accusations of government interference in a community matter. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hin


Israel announces new homes for settlers, Palestinians in West Bank ahead of Kushner visit

Views - 18 Thursday, 1 August 2019 00:00

Jerusalem (Reuters): Israel will build 6,000 new homes for Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank - a move Palestinian leaders decried as showing Israel’s “colonial mentality” - but in a rare step it also approved permits for 700 houses for


Hong Kong economy slows more than expected in second quarter amid trade war, protests

Views - 13 Thursday, 1 August 2019 00:00

Hong Kong (Reuters): Hong Kong’s economy grew less than expected in the second quarter as the US-China trade war escalated, and pressure looks set to intensify as mass anti-government protests rock the Asian financial centre. The economy expanded 0


Pompeo hopes to help patch up Japan-South Korea ties

Views - 15 Thursday, 1 August 2019 00:00

Bangkok (Reuters): US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he would encourage the two biggest US allies in Asia - Japan and South Korea - “to find a path forward” from a dispute that has roiled their ties when he meets their foreign ministers this


Asia stocks higher ahead of Fed, pound pressured by fresh Brexit pain

Views - 18 Wednesday, 31 July 2019 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Asian stocks edged up on Tuesday as equity investors prepared for an expected US interest rate cut this week while heightened concerns in currency markets about a no-deal Brexit sent the pound to a 28-month low. MSCI’s broadest ind


Accused 9/11 mastermind open to role in victims’ lawsuit if not executed

Views - 15 Wednesday, 31 July 2019 00:00

NEW YORK (Reuters): The accused mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks has indicated a willingness to be deposed by victims who are suing Saudi Arabia for damages, if the United States decides not to seek the death penalty against him. Khalid Shei


Hong Kong protesters disrupt train services, cause commuter chaos

Views - 15 Wednesday, 31 July 2019 00:00

HONG KONG (Reuters): Hundreds of Hong Kong protesters blocked train services during the early morning rush hour on Tuesday, causing commuter chaos in the latest anti-government campaign to roil the former British colony. What started three months ago


Death toll in Brazil prison massacre rises to 57 with over a dozen decapitated

Views - 17 Wednesday, 31 July 2019 00:00

Sao Paulo/Rio De Janeiro (Reuters): A bloody clash between two prison gangs on Monday left at least 57 inmates dead with 16 of them decapitated, authorities in the state of Para said, the latest deadly clash as Brazil’s government struggles to cont


Singapore PM’s brother backs opposition party in election twist

Views - 17 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

SINGAPORE (Reuters): The Singapore Prime Minister’s estranged brother has thrown his support behind a newly-formed opposition party in an intriguing twist ahead of elections expected to be held as soon as this year. In Facebook comments made late S


Four people including gunman killed in shooting at California food festival

Views - 16 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

SACRAMENTO (Reuters): A gunman killed at least three people at a California food festival on Sunday before being shot dead by police, and police were hunting for a second person they believed was involved in the killing. Some 15 people were wounded d


Russian Opposition Leader Navalny may have been poisoned: Doctor

Views - 18 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

MOSCOW (Reuters): Russian Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny was hospitalised on Sunday after suffering an acute allergic reaction which one doctor said may have been the result of him being poisoned with an unknown chemical substance. Navalny, 43, was


Beijing reiterates support for Hong Kong’s Lam, police

Views - 16 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

BEIJING/HONG KONG (Reuters): China reiterated on Monday its support for Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, and its police, and called on Hong Kong people to oppose violence following another weekend of clashes between protesters and police in the city


Oil falls on worries over growth outlook, positive news on Iran

Views - 17 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Oil prices fell on Monday as investors fretted over the outlook for global economic growth, while weekend talks between Iran and major powers ended on a generally positive note, suggesting an easing of tensions in the Middle East. Br


Britain is turbo-charging no-deal Brexit preparations: Raab

Views - 19 Tuesday, 30 July 2019 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): Britain is turbo-charging its no-deal Brexit preparations and will be ready to leave the European Union with or without a deal on 31 October, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said on Monday. Raab, an avowed Brexiteer, said the “unde


Today's Columnists

State of the economy of Sri Lanka

Saturday, 21 September 2019

I am not an economist nor do I profess to be an economic analyst. The views expressed in this presentation are those of a layman who has always been interested in the economic progress of Sri Lanka.


Premadasa, Père et Fils

Saturday, 21 September 2019

We are what time, circumstances and history has made of us. We are trapped in history. At age 77, I refuse to trap history in my mind. This essay is an obligation to history. Although J.R. Jayewardene introduced ‘Executive Presidentialism’, coer


Economy, business community and the Prime Minister

Friday, 20 September 2019

The speech made by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Chief Guest of the Sri Lanka Economic Summit 2019 deserves very careful consideration by the country due to several reasons. This will no doubt be his last speech on economic policy to be


Sri Lanka needs to invest more on soft infrastructure

Friday, 20 September 2019

Developing countries like Sri Lanka will have to prepare for further downside risks in 2020 with the growing debt problems and the growth problems in Europe and the slowdown in Asia. Slower growth is already visible in weakening global trade and comm


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