International

Credit Suisse pulls out of South Africa in global shift

Views - 5 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

JOHANNESBURG, REUTERS: Credit Suisse has pulled out of South Africa after more than a decade as part of Chief Executive Tidjane Thiam’s bank-wide revamp, three sources with knowledge of the matter said. Switzerland’s second largest bank is in th


Begging in Beijing? Pakistan sacks State TV Chief after broadcast gaffe

Views - 5 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

ISLAMABAD, REUTERS: Pakistan has removed the Acting Chief of State-run television after a caption read ‘Begging’ instead ‘Beijing’ during a broadcast of Prime Minister Imran Khan’s visit to China, which has promised economic aid to the impo


Pakistan gets boost of confidence but IMF bailout still on the cards

Views - 4 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

ISLAMABAD (Reuters): The Pakistani Finance Minister’s bullish comments declaring the end of an economic crisis have bolstered confidence ahead of crunch talks with the International Monetary Fund on Wednesday, but the country is still likely to nee


Return to oil production cuts in 2019 cannot be ruled out: OPEC

Views - 4 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

LONDON, REUTERS: A return to oil production cuts by OPEC and its allies next year cannot be ruled out, a senior OPEC source said on Wednesday, to avert a possible supply glut that could weigh on prices. The source was responding to a report by Russi


US allows grants sanctions waiver for Iran port development in India

Views - 8 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

WASHINGTON (Reuters): The top US diplomat has granted an exception to certain US sanctions that will allow the India-led development of a port in Iran as part of a new transportation corridor designed to boost Afghanistan’s economy, a State Departm


Global stocks hold gains, dollar weaker as Democrats win US House

Views - 6 Thursday, 8 November 2018 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Wall Street stock futures and Asian shares held earlier gains on Wednesday after Democrats won control of the US House of Representatives, boosting the party’s ability to block President Donald Trump’s political and economic agen


Export orders to US down a third at China’s largest trade fair

Views - 5 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

Beijing/Dongguan (Reuters): The value of export orders to the United States signed at China’s largest trade fair dropped 30.3% on the year, its organizer said, as higher US import tariffs made goods from batteries to farm tractors costlier. The ste


Euro zone economy slowing, but not as much as feared

Views - 4 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

LONDON (Reuters): Euro zone business growth slumped to a two-year low in October as growing trade tensions and tariffs, alongside rising political uncertainty, put a dent in exports and optimism, a survey showed on Tuesday. However, while survey and


Bill Gates, on China trip, lauds free trade - and futuristic toilets

Views - 7 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

BEIJING (Reuters): US billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates unveiled on Tuesday in Beijing a futuristic toilet that doesn’t need water or sewers and uses chemicals to turn human waste into fertiliser.


Alibaba’s Ma calls US-China trade war ‘most stupid thing in this world’

Views - 5 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

SHANGHAI (Reuters): The US-China trade war is the “most stupid thing in this world,” Jack Ma, the chief of Asia’s most valuable public company, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., said on Monday. The two countries have set tariffs on hundreds of billio


Britain regrets imposition of U.S. sanctions on Iran

Views - 4 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

LONDON, REUTERS: Britain said on Monday it regretted a U.S. decision to reimpose sanctions on Iran. “We regret the reimposition of sanctions by the U.S. We continue to believe that the Iran nuclear deal makes the world a safer place and our positi


Iran able to sell as much oil as it needs despite US pressure: Vice President

Views - 4 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

Geneva (Reuters): Iran has been able to sell as much oil as it needs despite US pressure, Iranian Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri was quoted as saying on Tuesday. The United States on Monday restored sanctions targeting Iran’s oil, banking and tran


Oil prices fall on Iran sanction exemptions, economic concerns

Views - 6 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

Singapore (Reuters): Oil prices fell on Tuesday, weighed down by sanction exemptions from Washington that will allow Iran’s biggest oil customers to keep importing from Tehran, as well as by concerns that an economic slowdown may curb fuel demand g


IS left behind more than 200 mass graves in Iraq: UN

Views - 6 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

BAGHDAD (AFP): The Islamic State group left behind more than 200 mass graves in Iraq containing up to 12,000 victims that could hold vital evidence of war crimes, the UN said Tuesday.


Malaysia PM says Japan to consider future financial support

Views - 10 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Japan is ready to extend Malaysia support to help overcome its financial problems if the need arises, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said on Tuesday. “Prime Minister (Shinzo) Abe assured as that, if, in future, we have a


Qatar’s ruler hopes Gulf crisis will end for sake of region

Views - 4 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

DOHA (Reuters): Qatar’s ruler said on Tuesday that a political and economic boycott of his country by larger neighbors had weakened a Gulf Arab bloc at a time of regional instability, but he voiced hope the crisis would pass. Emir Sheikh Tamim bin


Saudi should explain what happened to Khashoggi’s body: Turkey

Views - 5 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

ANKARA (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia bears responsibility to find out what happened to the body of Jamal Khashoggi, Turkey’s Foreign Minister said, reiterating Ankara’s stance that it was not King Salman who ordered the killing, Anadolu news agency re


Key governor races will shape America’s future politics

Views - 6 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Reuters): Showdowns in Georgia and Florida pitting black Democratic candidates against white Republicans supported by President Donald Trump headline the three dozen governors’ races being contested in Tuesday’s U.S. elections.


In warning about far-right in Europe, Macron mentions Hitler

Views - 8 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

PARIS (Reuters): President Emmanuel Macron has ratcheted up warnings about the rising threat of far-right nationalism, saying in an interview with a regional French newspaper that complacency was what allowed for the rise of Hitler and Mussolini. Spe


India says nuclear submarine makes first patrol, Modi warns against ‘misadventure’ by enemies

Views - 5 Wednesday, 7 November 2018 00:00

NEW DELHI (Reuters): India said on Monday its first domestically built nuclear-powered submarine had recently completed a “deterrence patrol”, giving it the capability to fire nuclear weapons from land, air and sea in the event of any “misadven


China’s Xi Jinping promises lower tariffs, more imports

Views - 7 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:10

Shanghai (Reuters): China will lower import tariffs and continue to broaden market access, President Xi Jinping said on Monday at the opening of a week-long trade expo seen as an attempt by Beijing to counter mounting criticism of its trade and busin


Saudi Prince Alwaleed: Khashoggi probe will exonerate leader

Views - 6 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:10

WASHINGTON (Reuters): Saudi Arabian billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, an international businessman from the kingdom, said on Sunday that an official investigation into the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi will exonerate the country’s leader


Iran says it will defy ‘economic war’ as US re-imposes curbs

Views - 4 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

WASHINGTON/DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran said it would defy the re-imposition of more U.S. sanctions on Monday, condemning as “economic war” Washington’s attempt to curb Tehran’s missile and nuclear prog


China says its lawful trade with Iran should be respected

Views - 3 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

BEIJING (Reuters) - China said on Monday its lawful trade cooperation with Iran should be respected and expressed regret that the United States re-imposed sanctions on the Middle Eastern country.


Ally of ex-Malaysian PM charged in $ 63 m graft case

Views - 5 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

KUALA LUMPUR, AFP: An ally of former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak was charged with graft Monday, the latest figure from the toppled scandal-plagued Government to be targeted in an anti-corruption drive. Since its shock victo


Debt-laden Malaysia surprises with big-spending budget

Views - 3 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

KUALA LUMPUR, AFP: Malaysia’s new government unveiled the country’s biggest ever budget Friday, a surprise move that defied expectations of major belt-tightening to reduce national debts inherited from the corrupt former administration. Analysts


Saudi tells UN rights body that it will prosecute Khashoggi murder

Views - 5 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

GENEVA (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia told the United Nations top human rights body on Monday that it was investigating the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at its Istanbul consulate last month with a view to prosecuting the perpetrators. Bandar Al Aib


Japan’s youth suicides hit 30-year high-survey

Views - 4 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

TOKYO (Reuters): Suicides by Japanese youth have reached a 30-year-high, the education ministry said on Monday, even as overall suicide numbers have steadily declined over the past 15 years. A total of 250 children i


Qatar rejects accusations of meddling in Bahrain internal affairs

Views - 2 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

DUBAI (Reuters): Qatar rejects accusations of meddling in Bahrain’s internal affairs, Qatar’s foreign ministry said in a tweet. “The State of Qatar condemns that its name was mentioned in Bahrain’s internal conflicts,” the ministry said. A


Brazil’s next president declares war on ‘fake news’ media

Views - 4 Tuesday, 6 November 2018 00:00

BRASILIA/SAO PAULO (Reuters): For Brazil’s right-wing President-elect Jair Bolsonaro, attacking critical press outlets almost daily on social media is not enough. Once in office, he vows to hit their bottom line. With half a billion dollars in publ


Today's Columnists

The Brahmin footprint in Sri Lankan history

Saturday, 17 November 2018

It is generally said that there are no genuine “Sri Lankan” Brahmins in the island today, and that those Brahmins who officiate as priests in Hindu kovils (temples) are of Indian origin with close ties with Tamil Nadu.


Country paying for Sirisena’s childlike behaviour

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Many were surprised on 26 October to see former President Rajapaksa being appointed Prime Minister by the very man who defeated him a couple years ago, at a considerable risk to himself and to those who helped him win the election. Then events beca


The JR-MR effect

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Sri Lanka over the last few weeks has experienced a twin crisis. One is political provoked by its Constitution, and the other economic engendered by its politics. However, this crisis is the combined effect of two previous presidencies, those of J.R.


The fish that swallowed the whale

Friday, 16 November 2018

This is an easy-peasy, elementary effort of an ordinary citizen to comprehend the mad scramble for power among the political class. It is undertaken in the belief that the crisis we face is an opportunity to reject the family kleptocracy of Mahinda R


Columnists More