Columnists

Rendering unto Caesar: the pathetic state of Sri Lanka’s university administration

Views - 5845 Monday, 29 June 2015 00:05

   What the University Grants Commission has done so far is not to promote competition among universities. It has developed a system where all universities have become uniform institutions – Pic by Sameera Wijesinghe


Good governance incomplete without effective mechanism for economic policy governance

Views - 5636 Monday, 22 June 2015 00:10

 Soldiers marching in North Korea. In extractive institutional systems such as North Korea, the state plunders the fruits of hard work by its population through various devices and apportions them among those who support or are made up of the


Little white book of Hilmy Cader’s wisdom: Strategic reflections at one’s fingertip!

Views - 5393 Monday, 8 June 2015 00:00

  MTI Consulting CEO Hilmy Cader   Value of sparsity over verbosity Hilmy Cader, Strategy Master, has chosen sparsity of words over verbosity in communicating his wisdom in his Strategic Reflections, a coll


The issue of continual losses and depleted capital: Central Bank still misses the main point

Views - 4860 Monday, 25 May 2015 00:00

A parable from accounting teachers Accounting teachers are used to relating a story to their students when they are introduced to the concept of profit in an organisation. The objective is to show them that ultimate profits of a bu


A Central Bank missing the main point puts the nation on ‘extra’ red alert

Views - 6267 Monday, 18 May 2015 00:00

Treating losses lightly by the Central Bank The Central Bank has issued a response (available here) to the article of this writer in this series titled ‘The continually loss-making Central Bank puts nation on red alert’


The continually loss-making Central Bank puts nation on red alert

Views - 4800 Monday, 11 May 2015 14:39

        Central Bank making losses in two consecutive years There is an ominously dangerous Trojan horse that has been placed in the Central Bank by its previous administration led by the so-called Monetary


‘Kithul syrup can be Sri Lanka’s maple syrup to the world,’ says scientist Sirimal Premakumara

Views - 9565 Monday, 27 April 2015 00:00

‘Drink Ceylon Tea: The brain tonic’ Some 150 years ago, the British planters introduced a new herbal drink called ‘Ceylon Tea’ to the European markets. Their marketing slogan? “Drink Ceylon Tea: The Brain Tonic”, according to a billboard


‘Solid waste no more waste but like gold’ says Sri Lankan-born scientist C. Visvanathan

Views - 10616 Monday, 20 April 2015 00:01

How would we react to a nauseatingly stinking dump of garbage in the vicinity? Stinking of all kinds of foul odours because it is in various stages of natural decomposition? Many of us would wrinkle up our noses and try to walk away from it as fast a


Is capitalism immoral? Not at all, says Atlas Network’s Tom Palmer

Views - 7014 Monday, 6 April 2015 00:00

[caption id="attachment_403639" align="alignnone" width="360"] Tom Palmer – Pic by Shehan Gunasekara[/caption] Bastiat Society in Colombo “Is capitalism immoral?” This was the question which Tom G. Palmer of Atlas Network – a US-based n


Central banking 18: Governor and board members are trustees and not owners of the central bank

Views - 7209 Monday, 30 March 2015 00:30

A central bank can earn its living by printing money A central bank is a unique species. It does not have to work in order to earn its existence. This is because it has been given a power which no one else in society has. That power is to have all th


From bomb disaster to bond disaster: How to restore the lost reputation of the Central Bank

Views - 8004 Monday, 23 March 2015 00:10

The Central Bank was left severely damaged after being struck by the deadly terrorist bombing of 1996     Central Bank being hit by two disasters In a recent conversation, a top central bank officer mentioned to this writer, p


Prof. Lalith Samarakoon: As US interest rates rise, no space for Sri Lanka to wait and see

Views - 8868 Monday, 16 March 2015 01:07

Two contrasting developments associated with USA and EU Two contrasting developments are now taking place in the global monetary arrangements. On one side, US Federal Reserve, known as the Fed, which had introduced an unconventional monetary stimulu


To have or not to have IFRS: CB should not make hasty decision

Views - 7995 Monday, 9 March 2015 00:10

Dropping IFRS should not be an arbitrary and hasty decision to be made by the Central Bank’s current management. Before they reach such a decision, they should listen to both sides and that should be a part of Central Bank’s good governance


Questionable governance when loss-incurred CB has made a profit transfer to Government

Views - 7444 Monday, 2 March 2015 00:01

Massive losses incurred by Central Bank in 2013 A very vital piece of information relating to the Central Bank which has been missed by many has been the incurrence of a massive loss amounting to Rs. 24 billion in its ordinary operations during 2013


Supporting Sustainable Development: Bangladesh Bank Governor’s bold attempt at promoting green finan

Views - 6718 Monday, 23 February 2015 00:00

    Tendency to hail faster economic growth Countries, both rich and poor, have been long pursuing long policies for fast-growing the volume of material goods and services available to their citizens. When growth rates of close t


Delay in fighting corruption: An impatient electorate shouldn’t be taken lightly

Views - 7631 Monday, 16 February 2015 00:00

    Learn from Modi’s mistake Narendra Modi became India’s Prime Minister in 2014 in an anti-corruption wave. His election slogan ‘Good governance and lean government’ appealed to India’s middle class voters who had bee


EPF should exit banking sector and Central Bank should leave private banks in private hands

Views - 9289 Monday, 9 February 2015 00:10

EPF should quit the banking and financial sector as fast as possible and the Central Bank should leave private banks in the hands of the private sector. That is in line with good governance in central banking       Mone


Public servants’ salary hike, productivity improvement and lessons from Dompe eHospital Project

Views - 8922 Monday, 2 February 2015 00:00

A mega salary increase to public servants A mega giveaway offered in the Interim Budget 2015, presented to Parliament last week, has been the proposal to increase the salaries of public servants across the board. In terms of this proposal, the salar


Listing Central Bank under PM: Unworkable legally and operationally but a step toward bank’s indepen

Views - 8910 Monday, 26 January 2015 00:00

The Central Bank under the Prime Minister The gazette notification issued by President Maithripala Sirisena allocating subjects and institutions among different ministries has placed the Central Bank of Sri Lanka under the Ministry of Policy Plannin


To regain lost credibility, Central Bank should act as ‘impartial spectator’ and not as ‘policy owne

Views - 8905 Monday, 19 January 2015 00:05

The loss of credibility The conduct of Sri Lanka’s Central Bank in the recent few years has drawn a lot of criticism from the concerned public. One such criticism has been that it has functioned as a branch office of the ruling party defending ins


The triumph of good governance: Sri Lanka has shown that it is a true ‘Wonder of Asia’

Views - 8342 Monday, 12 January 2015 00:01

Two different election platforms by the two main candidates The two main contenders to the presidency at the recently-concluded elections fought their battle on two different election platforms. The former President Mahinda Rajapaksa sought to sell


Choice at elections: Rationally ignorant people will decide the final outcome !

Views - 6428 Monday, 5 January 2015 00:00

Electors who do not read manifestos Just three more days to go for the election of a President, this writer asked a group of acquaintances whether they have gone through the election manifestos of the two main contenders to the post before they made


Two parables of a burning house: Both are relevant and useful to Sri Lankans today

Views - 8665 Monday, 29 December 2014 00:00

Bertolt Brecht going viral in social media At a recent political discussion on a private TV channel, a leading Sri Lankan author, Gamini Viyangoda, concluded his presentation with the Sinhala rendering of a poem by playwright Bertolt Brecht (availab


Tumbling of crude oil prices: Economic laws say that this is a temporary phenomenon

Views - 6337 Monday, 22 December 2014 00:00

A drastic reduction in crude oil prices Crude oil prices in the world market have tumbled and they are still tumbling. The average price of the West Texas Intermediate category of crude oil stood at a level of $ 100 per barrel, which is equal to 159


Developing SL pharmaceutical industry: Concentrate on research and producing biomedical scientists

Views - 7599 Monday, 15 December 2014 00:00

A worthwhile suggestion that has been ignored At the pre-Budget meeting which the Treasury Secretary P.B. Jayasundera had with business leaders, an important proposal to take Sri Lanka to the future was made by Hemas Holdings Chairman Husein Esufall


IPS State of the Economy 2014: A critical probe shows hidden risks and defects of policies

Views - 6511 Monday, 8 December 2014 00:00

IPS, the forerunner in reviewing the country’s economy The Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), in issuing its 2014 State of the Economy Report, has drawn attention of Sri Lanka’s economic policy makers to a number of hidden risks and defects of t


Constitutional Reforms are meaningless unless opposing views are tolerated

Views - 6094 Monday, 1 December 2014 02:02

Wear the same tie as the boss but don’t agree to his unlawful orders Bank of Ceylon’s retired General Manager Sarath de Silva, addressing the Sri Jayewardenepura University’s Public Administration Alumni Association last week, left an importan


Indraratna Chinthana on sustained development: Still valid and will be valid forever

Views - 6353 Monday, 24 November 2014 00:00

The need for critically debating policy proposals Colombo University’s Emeritus Professor and Sri Lanka Economic Association’s President A.D.V. de S .Indraratna has just released in book form an updated and revised version of the SLEA presidenti


Single digit inflation for 5 years: Now the challenge is to get out of ‘Lowflation Trap’

Views - 7370 Monday, 17 November 2014 00:01

Driving down CCPI through administrative measures When the annual increase in the cost of living of average consumers in Colombo and suburbs declined from 3.5% in September to 1.6% in October 2014, the Central Bank could not hide its joy. In its pre


My View at 200: Objective was to change the monologue culture to dialogue and then to multilogue; bu

Views - 5884 Monday, 10 November 2014 00:00

Unbroken 200 runs Today’s My View – Economics Matters marks its 200th article published in this series on the economy, society, politics and global developments. It has appeared without failure on every Monday for nearly four years and maintaini


Today's Columnists

Economy vs. environment – What you see in the mirror

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Do we buy organic vegetables? Or are we cost conscious and buy the regular vegetables? Would we rather live in United States or United Kingdom which have higher air pollution levels, or would we live in Myanmar or....


Seven Kartajaya mantras for Sri Lankan marketers

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Hermawan Kartajaya is the former President of the World Marketing Association and one of the top 50 marketing gurus who has shaped the world of marketing. His insight has made many companies change their business strategies....


When the saints go masquerading in

Tuesday, 25 February 2020

So that saintly MP has thrown a spanner in government’s works again. The pious member lashed out against a battery of citizens from journalists and lawyers to members of his own estate. Last week, much of his grievance was about the silence of the


So Sri Lanka; more like, so where are all the women in the hotel industry?

Tuesday, 25 February 2020

The tourism industry is a key service export of Sri Lanka. It is currently the third-largest export earner after foreign worker remittances and textiles and apparel and brought in $ 4.4 billion in 2018 alone, equivalent to 4.9% of the country’s GDP


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