Columnists,Opinion and Issues

Our national purpose… once again

Views - 414 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:15

Once again, dramatic political events in Colombo remind us that branding is primarily an internal project. Nine years after the end of the civil war, a monumental failure of leadership has left us looking inward rather than finding our own place in t


The dead ropes

Views - 588 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:14

In politics, as in life, there are no permanent friends – or enemies. All is in flux. When circumstances or situations change, people go with the flow. Rare is the man (or woman) in public life who stays rooted in one dear spot. Although we ‘grav


Sirisena’s triple betrayal: Nation in danger

Views - 968 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:13

Three betrayals Gamaralalage Maithripala Sirisena, it seems, is a specialist in betrayal. He first betrayed his former leader and former President, Mahinda Rajapaksa. He had a hopper feed with Mahinda the very morning of that act of deception and was


The political dog fight

Views - 111 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:09

Sri Lanka has experienced a constitutional or rather unconstitutional takeover of the Government. A similar incident happened in 2003 when Wickremesinghe was the Prime Minister where President Kumaratunga took over three ministries of the Government.


The Buddhist civilisation supersedes the human rights of the West

Views - 221 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:07

Given the gravity of the crises facing the Vatican, it has wasted no-time in redefining the moral mission of the Catholic Church in the world. Yet, the American federal investigation into the sexual improprieties of clergies in Pennsylvania—as wel


India in Sri Lanka: Price of misperceptions and misreads

Views - 332 Monday, 29 October 2018 00:05

One of the notable features of the current dynamics of Sri Lankan politics is the growing recognition by all parties in the country of India’s growing sensitivity to Sri Lanka’s major domestic political issues and changes. Historically viewed, th


Thilanga on Sri Lanka’s progress in achieving SDGs

Views - 98 Saturday, 27 October 2018 00:00

A workshop on the critical role of Parliament and Parliamentarians in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Sri Lanka organised by the Parliamentary Select Committee on United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in collabo


Decline of secularism in South Asia

Views - 270 Saturday, 27 October 2018 00:00

South Asia’s multi-religious countries, namely India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, started off with a noble wish to be ‘secular’ and keep religion out of the business of the State. Hindu-majority India, under the leadership of the avowed


Does the SEC grant licenses for the wealthy to avoid paying taxes?

Views - 132 Saturday, 27 October 2018 00:00

Does the SEC grant licenses for the wealthy to avoid paying taxes? As you and I are aware, the SEC or the Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka is charged with the task of regulating the capital markets of the country. You may then wonder h


Why our investment drive needs a Dammika or a Harry to steer the ship

Views - 842 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:02

The current Higher Education Minister Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe when he was Justice Minister very boldly stated at the Sri Lanka Economic Summit in 2017 that the Board of Investment should be shut down. The BOI is the current PM’s brainchild and an


A gentleman planter par excellence

Views - 75 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:01

The curtain came down on the life of Wickrema De Alwis on 20 October at four score and seven, leaving friends and family to reflect on the qualities of a man that made him not just one of the finest tea planters the industry had known but also a true


Carnage of elephants by trains: Simple solutions are need of the hour

Views - 234 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:01

There are much deliberations at ‘high places’ by many ‘experts’ in order to find a solution to the carnage that is taking place on the rail tracks, while wild elephants succumb to gruesome deaths at an alarmingly rapid rate.


Trade liberalisation or rationalisation? What is more desirable?

Views - 168 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:01

Trade liberalisation or free trade has come to a sharp controversy in the context of recent and ongoing rupee depreciation. However, it has been thoroughly a discussed topic internationally, both theoretically and empirically, although not conclusive


What right has GMOA to dictate terms to the Health Minister ?

Views - 8 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:00

What right has the GMOA to dictate terms to the Minister of Health who stands up against bullying by the GMOA? The Minister represents the people while the GMOA represents a trade union masquerading as a professional group. Professional associations


Humour as a panacea for the bane of politics

Views - 156 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:00

Today your columnist will stray a tad bit off the well-trodden path. To make a foray into the realm of three types of the ‘funnies’. Where the sun is always shining on our blessed isle. If there is a cloud on the


Sri Lanka’s human capital progress: Still less than its full potential

Views - 18 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:00

The World Bank has launched its Human Capital Project (HCP) intended to improve the human capital of people. Through this, it aims to facilitate equity and economic growth. The project rightly recognises that,


Budget bodes opportunity to better nation’s economic and physical health

Views - 6 Friday, 26 October 2018 00:00

During a recent discussion that centred on the impact of Non-Communicable Diseases in Sri Lanka, it was revealed that 75% of deaths in the country were the result of NCDs, with one in five such deaths recorded as


Sri Lanka’s economic outlook: Testing times ahead

Views - 371 Thursday, 25 October 2018 00:00

Despite the many improvements on the macroeconomic front over the last two years, the run of GDP growth of under 4% – continuing for a sixth consecutive quarter – is a cause of some anxiety. Economic growth matters; whether or not GDP is an appro


Manmade warming of the globe

Views - 32 Thursday, 25 October 2018 00:00

By Oscar E.V. Fernando That ecology is a burning issue affecting the world, as atmospheric pollution and poisoned water do not have frontiers, and therefore need no visa to enter other countries, was a concluding remark at a global seminar on environ


Economic globalisation and a shared future for mankind

Views - 57 Thursday, 25 October 2018 00:00

President EU China Friendship Group European Parliament, Vice President EU Parliament International Development Committee, Chairman Gao Peiyong, Your Excellencies Romano Prodi, David Gosset, Edmond Alpphndery, Chen Wenling. Economic globalisation is


High Commissioner Skandakumar inspires Australia Awards South and West Asia Scholars

Views - 637 Thursday, 25 October 2018 00:00

Simon Merrifield, Honourable Excellencies, distinguished guests, I would like to thank the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for according me this singular honour to address such a distinguished array of intellectuals. Let me also add the congr


Leaving no one behind

Views - 34 Wednesday, 24 October 2018 00:00

There are nights when Udayakumar Manjula wakes to find her house flooded. Heavy rains bring water seeping under her door to where she and her family lie sleeping. While they wait for it to subside, she props her children up on plastic chairs. “Some


Cabraal questions Forex borrowings and rupee depreciation

Views - 89 Wednesday, 24 October 2018 00:00

On 17 October, the Central Bank proudly announced that it has secured a loan of $ 1,000 million at an interest rate “linked” to six-month USD LIBOR (while for some reason not specifying how so) from the China Development Bank, under a Foreign Cur


Dhaka, Colombo for win-win RMG collaboration: Samarawickrama

Views - 93 Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:00

Dhaka and Colombo can have a win-win in the apparel sector, by utilising the advantages of each country, Development Strategies and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama said, concluding a two-day visit to Dhaka last week. In the capacit


Investor forums and reviving the stock market

Views - 108 Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:00

As the stock market is heading for the fourth consecutive annual decline this year, an investor forum was held in London recently, organised by the Colombo Stock Exchange. Undoubtedly advertising or creating awareness is fine. However have we missed


Value of regulated landfills: Megapolis Ministry must communicate

Views - 236 Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:00

Our policymakers may do the right thing but not do it too well by not communicating the larger purpose of their actions. The current fuss about the proposed Aruwakkalu landfill is one such example. As the Ministry of Megapolis correctly points out,


Sri Lanka’s evolving retail environment and the need for change

Views - 1151 Tuesday, 23 October 2018 00:00

By Aruna Mawilmada Over the past decade the retail landscape in Sri Lanka has changed with the evolving needs of shoppers. The ubiquitous traditional trade of yesteryear – family-owned grocery chains, small independent stores, and informal merchant


IPS’s State of the Economy Report 2018 is a demonstration of its independent analysis of the economy

Views - 4691 Monday, 22 October 2018 00:00

Economists are at the receiving end of society today when it comes to economic crises. They have been blamed not only for giving confusing advice, but also for failing to predict accurately the oncoming economic catastrophes.


Smuggled cigarettes: A challenge to Govt.’s revenue and health objectives

Views - 103 Monday, 22 October 2018 00:00

RIU: Sri Lanka is one of the first middle-income countries to adopt a strong tobacco control policy.


Multi-pronged reforms effort remains key for Sri Lanka: IMF

Views - 273 Monday, 22 October 2018 00:00

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says for Sri Lanka to unlock its growth potential as well as strengthen the resilience of the economy to shocks, the country must persist with a multi-pronged reforms effort including revenue-based fiscal consoli


Today's Columnists

Reaching global quality standards through Deming Award

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The importance of quality in the contemporary competitive business environment cannot be over-emphasised. Total Quality Management (TQM)is a company-wide, all pervasive management philosophy, which organisations globally, in many business sectors hav


Ramsar accreditation of Colombo Wetlands: Rebranding Colombo as a Wetland City

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Colombo, once known to be “kolonthota,” has always been identified as a wetland complex at the heart of the Kelani river delta. Today this city is increasingly drying up, with around 20 sq km left as wetlands which continue to be threatened every


Coup Sri Lanka: some winners, mostly losers

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

As a president proves shockingly stubborn, a nation waits with baited breath as to what His Excellency the loose cannon on a rocky slope will do next. Two Prime Ministers and the fates of their respective parliamentary groups hang in the balance lik


Rising dollar and bank NPA, brothers in arms?

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The rising Non-Performing Advances (NPA/NPAs) is a matter of concern to the entire financial industry. It is a nightmare. The weekend papers have published some articles based on interviews journalists conducted with respective bank CEOs and also bas


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