Columnists

Coming out of the economic crisis: Time is running out for Sri Lanka

Views - 7387 Tuesday, 24 May 2016 00:10

For Sri Lanka to attain its goal, it is of utmost importance to consolidate the budget which has gone out of control due to falling revenue and soaring expenditure   Crisis manifesting as a foreign exchange shortage Sr


Wisdom of a Monetary Board impassively watching over a fast declining capital base

Views - 6754 Monday, 16 May 2016 00:00

 Central Bank’s response is a salutary development A response issued by the Central Bank (available at: http://www.ft.lk/article/540589/Central-Bank-has-its-say-over--Continuously-loss-making-Central-Bank-is-no-better-than-Sri-Lankan-


Reintroducing repatriation requirement: Have the Finance Ministry and Central Bank gone back on thei

Views - 7009 Monday, 9 May 2016 00:10

Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake and Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran  – File photo Move to change exchange control into exchange management Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in presenting the Economic


Continuously loss-making Central Bank is no better than SriLankan Airlines

Views - 7119 Tuesday, 3 May 2016 00:02

Central Bank capital depletion is also a landmine under PM’s feet Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, supported by Senior Minister Sarath Amunugama, castigated SriLankan Airlines in a recent press briefing (available at: http://www.ft.lk/


A cherry-picking Monetary Board when another major ‘bond scandal’ is rubbing on its nose

Views - 7031 Monday, 25 April 2016 00:10

Source: EconomyNext  Monetary Board is the authority on monetary policy The Central Bank of Sri Lanka has issued a response (available at: http://www.ft.lk/article/536676/Central-Bank-responds-to--Dilemma-in-Monetary-


Economic crisis management: Consensual logical and consistent policy package is need of the day

Views - 5976 Monday, 18 April 2016 00:05

   Taking a completely contradictory view to the wisdom pronounced by IMF Mission, Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran is reported to have dismissed the need for monetary policy tightening   An economic cr


Hilmy Cader’s Fine Advice to Exporters: If the objective is to prosper, confront reality and think s

Views - 6513 Monday, 11 April 2016 00:10

MTI Consulting CEO Hilmy Cader - Pic by Daminda Harsha Perera A powerful shake up of exporters  In a recent forum and discussion on the country’s exports organised by MTI Consulting and Daily FT in Colombo, MTI Head H


Dilemma in monetary policy: Monetary Board being caught in ‘The Devil’s Alternative’?

Views - 8736 Monday, 4 April 2016 00:00

Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran    Disappointing the market’s predictions When the Monetary Board of the Central Bank was due to announce its monetary policy decision in March 2016, the market


Right to Information Bill: A defeat of public aspirations for transparency in the Central Bank?

Views - 7259 Monday, 28 March 2016 00:10

 Pledge to allow citizens to get information from public bodies There was an important pledge given by the current government in its Manifesto seeking election to power at the General Elections held in August, 2015. That was to introduce me


What is wrong with our ailing tea industry and where does its cure lie?

Views - 5754 Monday, 21 March 2016 00:01

    Tea should have a wider angle than a mere beverage At a panel discussion following an evening presentation organised by the Institute of Certified Professional Managers or CPM in Colombo last week, a questioner from the a


ETCA or any other policy is destined to fail if not properly managed

Views - 5750 Monday, 14 March 2016 00:00

Critics say that ILFTA has favoured India and not Sri Lanka. This is a misconception and a conclusion arrived at by glancing at the information available on the surface     The best economic policy doesn&


‘Padeniya Chinthana’ on ETCA: Govt. should fight it in intellectual forums, not in the streets

Views - 7482 Tuesday, 8 March 2016 01:19

Management of Economic Policy 4 The crusader of good governance in healthcare system Dr. Anuruddha Padeniya, Medical Specialist and President of the 18,000-member strong Government Medical Officers’ Association – be


Management of Economic Policy 3: Sri Lanka should tap global unbundling opportunities of services un

Views - 6240 Monday, 29 February 2016 00:10

   The need for wide public consultation when trade agreements are signed The first article in this series warned against the secrecy surrounding the Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement, now known as ETCA, which the G


ETCA is not CEPA in all respects, but it should be made public to allay fears

Views - 6071 Tuesday, 23 February 2016 00:10

Management of Economic Policy 2  Taking note of the widespread protests which CEPA had run into earlier by a section of the services sector organisations in the country, the new Government, it appears, has presented it in a rebranded


Sri Lanka faces crucial tests ahead with growing opposition to ETCA

Views - 6697 Monday, 15 February 2016 00:00

Management of Economic Policy 1  Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe  Linking Sri Lanka to the global market The proposed Economic and Technological Cooperation Agreement or ETCA has been one of the crucia


Central Bank’s clarification on EPF has unwittingly refuted Prime Minister and Minister of Finance?

Views - 5840 Monday, 8 February 2016 00:10

   Selective response by EPF to concerns raised The Central Bank has issued a clarification, carried by Daily FT in its print edition of 1 February 2016, on the Monetary Board’s alleged failure to publish the annual


Hausmann and Govt. in the hot seat

Views - 5802 Monday, 1 February 2016 00:00

Consult two economists and get a multitude of opinions    Ricardo Hausmann - AFP   Economists are a funny species. You speak to two and get three opinions. But in today’s contex


EPF and ETF: Should or shouldn’t they be merged into a separate institution?

Views - 7489 Monday, 25 January 2016 00:02

 Trade unions up in arms against the proposed merger of EPF and ETF In a recent live television discussion on ITN, the President of the Ceylon Bank Employees Union, also known as CBEU, made a very strong case against the proposed merger of


The illusive rescue of the rupee by an elusive Belgian investor: Is the Yahapalana Government on the

Views - 9890 Monday, 18 January 2016 00:00

   An elusive Belgian investor to rescue the rupee According to Reuters, Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake is reported to have disclosed that an unidentified Belgian investor has promised to give Sri Lanka $ 1 billion by


Ricardo Hausmann’s message: Restructure exports for growth choosing products over which you can comp

Views - 6726 Monday, 11 January 2016 00:10

Ricardo Hausmann  Sri Lankans’ strange psyche: Exports are good but Imports are bad There is a popular economic belief among Sri Lankans that in order to build Sri Lanka as a strong nation, it should produce everythin


Looming economic crisis: policy approaches are too short and too late while some are unproductive

Views - 6238 Monday, 4 January 2016 00:05

  Open admission of the looming economic crisis Three moves made by the Central Bank in the recent past have been tantamount to an open admission that Sri Lanka is in a deep economic crisis. Of course, the crisis, as this writer had


President’s war against polythene and tobacco

Views - 6582 Monday, 28 December 2015 00:05

   President Maithripala Sirisena has declared war against two products. In speeches in Parliament as well as outside, he has proclaimed that both these products would be banned beginning from 2016. One of the products to be bann


Wijedasa Liyanarachchi case: A lesson for perpetrators of human rights

Views - 6774 Monday, 21 December 2015 00:15

  Ravindra Fernando’s book ‘Death of a Lawyer in Police Custody: The Wijedasa Liyanarachchi Case’ Almighty governments fighting with citizens When an almighty government is at war with a section of its own


Budget 2016 and education and health expenditure: Playing numbers games isn’t in accord with good go

Views - 7953 Monday, 14 December 2015 00:10

   Chief of the IMF Mission to Sri Lanka, Todd Schneider, has questioned the accuracy of some of the figures presented in Budget 2016 - AFP Controversy over education and health numbers A controversy has arisen relating


The Great November Revolution: The inside story according to Dinesh Weerakkody

Views - 6773 Monday, 7 December 2015 00:00

Author Dinesh Weerakkody presents his book ‘The Great November Revolution’ to President Maithripala Sirisena at its launch held at the BMICH. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne and Deputy Fo


EPS and Budget 2016 Part 4: The establishment of a viable social security system for an ageing popul

Views - 5876 Monday, 30 November 2015 00:00

Providing old-age social security is a national issue Sri Lanka’s population is ageing and an ageing population needs a viable old-age social security system. In this regard, the Economic Policy Statement or EPS of the Government has pledg


Budget 2016: Has it laid foundation for implementing the policy outlined in EPS of Yahapalana Govern

Views - 5148 Monday, 23 November 2015 00:05

Economic Policy Statement has vowed to discipline the budget The Budget of the new Yahapalana Government for 2016 was presented by Minister Ravi Karunanayake in Parliament last week. This budget follows the economic policy statement or


EPS of Yahapalana Government: Necessity for introducing machinery for sustaining the reform program

Views - 6334 Monday, 16 November 2015 00:10

   A fourth wave of policy reforms The economic policy statement presented by the new Government has vowed to introduce a reform program laying a firm foundation to place the economy on the right track so that it can sustain gr


Economic Policy Statement of Yahapalana Government: Building concrete plans for implementation out o

Views - 7888 Monday, 9 November 2015 00:10

An economic policy statement at last Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe outlined the economic policy to be pursued by his Government in the next five-year period in Parliament last week (available at: http://www.ft.lk/article/492945/


Paradox in Central Bank’s monetary policy: Not everyone approves of the policy direction

Views - 6577 Monday, 2 November 2015 00:00

IMF’s Resident Representative for Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Dr. Eteri Kvintradze Wrong monetary policy direction of the Central Bank The IMF’s Resident Representative for Sri Lanka and the Maldives, Dr. Eteri Kvin


Today's Columnists

The rate of exchange, capital flight and the Central Bank

Friday, 21 September 2018

The Central Bank (CBSL) exists for the sole purpose of price stability. Its controls on the financial system and monetary policy exist to maintain price stability. As put forth many times by the Governor, the failing of the CBSL to control inflation


Red flag over the Sri Lankan Navy

Friday, 21 September 2018

Shocking story Rusiripala, a former banker in Sri Lanka, who has taken to writing in Daily FT, is perturbed by the red flag I have raised (Daily FT article 18 September) over the shocking charge that our Navy had operated a ransom gang that had abduc


The bald truth about fake news, etc.

Friday, 21 September 2018

In its most innocent forms, we may all enjoy a bit of ‘fake news’ and go to bed with a lighter heart and clean conscience. A meme on Facebook urging social media consumers to caution – “You can’t believe everything you read on the internet


Withholding Taxes – What, why, when?

Thursday, 20 September 2018

The tax regime in Sri Lanka historically imposes WHT on both domestic as well as cross border payments. WHT on domestic payments eases revenue collection (e.g.: PAYE) while WHT on cross border payments are adopted by most countries to ensure that the


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