Columnists

Saman Kelegama: Even the blood running through his veins is oriented to economics

Views - 4411 Tuesday, 27 June 2017 00:10

The bearded economist who saw shortcomings of Sri Lanka’s liberalisation move My association with Dr. Saman Kelegama, Executive Director of the Institute of Policy Studies or IPS, dates back to the early 1990s when I had the opportunity to


Sri Lanka has no choice but to grow with giants

Views - 3668 Monday, 19 June 2017 00:10

Sri Lanka has no choice but to adopt a development strategy that helps it to grow with giants – Pic by Shehan Gunasekara   Nature while creating giants has empowered dwarfs with overpowering cunningness One can accuse


Asking a wings-clipped Finance Minister to fly is a classic repeat of ‘Dunna Dunugamuwe’

Views - 4432 Monday, 12 June 2017 00:01

An unorthodox and illogical functional allocation President Maithripala Sirisena has issued the Extraordinary Gazette Notification dated 7 June 2017 allocating functions among the newly sworn-in Ministers a week ago. In this notification too, th


Missing the bus to prosperity: Sri Lanka should now go for comprehensive reforms instead of savourin

Views - 5384 Monday, 5 June 2017 00:10

Samaraweera’s commitment to policy reforms Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera, lamenting over the country’s missed opportunities in the past due to not making correct decisions at the correct time, has reiterated his commitmen


New Finance Minister has a Herculean task ahead; he will win only if he moves with foresight

Views - 4370 Monday, 29 May 2017 00:05

New Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera officially assuming duties at the ministry  – Pic by Pradeep Pathirana   Promise to continue with economic reform program The new Minister of Finance, Mangala Sa


One Belt One Road Initiative: When Donald Trump closes up, Xi Jinping plans to open up

Views - 4729 Monday, 22 May 2017 00:07

Chinese President Xi Jinping together with Heads of Governments including Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe pose for a group picture at the opening of the Belt and Road for International Cooperation Summit in Beijing,


CB Annual Report 2016: Bold in critical analysis and proactive in policy recommendations

Views - 5068 Monday, 15 May 2017 00:21

Release of CB Annual Report 2016 The Monetary Board released its Annual Report on the state of the economy in 2016, commonly known as the Central Bank Annual Report, two weeks ago. The Governor and the senior officers of the bank had in per


Reform of Exchange Controls – Part III: Proposed Foreign Exchange Act, an improvement on many count

Views - 5494 Monday, 8 May 2017 00:04

Making exchange control a permanent law In parts one and two of this series (available respectively at: http://www.ft.lk/article/610886/Reform-of-exchange-controls--There-is-a-need--but-do-it-correctly-%E2%80%93-Part-I and http://www.ft.lk/


Reform of exchange controls – Part II: Bringing exchange controls to the permanent law book

Views - 5811 Tuesday, 2 May 2017 00:00

 The Central Bank implements ECA as the agent of the Government and for that purpose has to create a separate department called the Exchange Control Department     Exchange controls to fight a war In P


Reform of exchange controls: There is a need, but do it correctly – Part I

Views - 6727 Monday, 24 April 2017 00:01

The first Ceylonese Governor of the newly-established Central Bank N.U. Jayawardena ​ Proposal to reform exchange controls without giving details Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in announcing the economic policy s


Emerging challenges in the power sector: Unless tackled urgently, future growth is gloomy

Views - 6476 Monday, 17 April 2017 00:10

  SLEA to analyse critical economic issues   The Sri Lanka Economic Association, abbreviated as SLEA, under its new President Dr. Upananda Vidanapathirana, has ventured into generating public discussion of cr


Prof. Dharma De Silva: The unforgettable trailblazer in management education in Sri Lanka

Views - 6981 Tuesday, 11 April 2017 00:10

  Professor Dharma De Silva (extreme left) with Vice Chancellor Rev Walpola Rahula (extreme right) at a book donation ceremony to Vidyodaya University by US Embassy in 1966. Also in the picture are Deputy Secretary K.P.G. Wjayasurendr


Alleged losses at EPF: Monetary Board will open itself to outside inquiry by playing slow mode

Views - 6671 Monday, 3 April 2017 00:03

Massive losses at EPF through imprudent bond deals Media reports last week had referred to an alleged loss of Rs 9.5 billion at the Employees Provident Fund or EPF when it had made some scandalous deals with a primary dealer company now und


Education is not a commodity: but it is and it should be negotiable

Views - 7387 Monday, 27 March 2017 00:10

Students claim that education is not a commodity ‘Education is not a commodity’ has been a popular view almost universally held by Sri Lanka’s student community in higher learning institutions. For them, it is non


US interest rate hike: Sri Lanka has no alternative but to follow the suit

Views - 7084 Monday, 20 March 2017 00:01

US interest rate hike is linked to all other interest rates  The Federal Reserve Bank – the central bank of the United States of America – announced last week that its benchmark interest rate would be increased from 0.7


The inconclusive IMF review and challenges ahead for Sri Lanka

Views - 6315 Monday, 13 March 2017 00:01

The Central Bank’s funding of the Government budget is highly undesirable since such funding would be in the form of creating seed money – known as base money or reserve money – that would generate money supply increases


ABC of Trumponomics: Can it make the US a great nation?

Views - 6284 Monday, 6 March 2017 00:01

US President Donald J. Trump Addressing a joint session of the Congress US President Donald J. Trump outlined his economic philosophy – known as Trumponomics – to a joint session of the Congress last week (


Restoring ‘Economic Democracy’: Is it an elusive goal?

Views - 6431 Monday, 27 February 2017 01:47

President Maithripala Sirisena Promised delivery of economic democracy to people One of the pledges made by the present Government in its election manifesto titled ‘The Five Point Plan for creating a new country in 60 mont


SAITM and private medical schools: One bad start should not lead to throwing away a good idea

Views - 7792 Monday, 20 February 2017 00:01

Opposition to SAITM SAITM, the abbreviation for Sri Lanka's newest private university, South Asian Institute of Technology and Medicine (available at: http://www.saitm.edu.lk/), has been denoting a derogatory meaning in Sri Lankans' pres


Central Bank’s mad rush to mandate credit: Shocking banks is not in accord with PM’s Social Market E

Views - 6372 Monday, 13 February 2017 00:50

  Mandating credit allocation without fanfare The Central Bank of Sri Lanka has, without fanfare or publicised press conferences, issued a one and a half page long circular to commercial banks urging them to maintain a mini


The Good Governance Government should not ignore Sri Lanka’s slipping down on the World Rule of Law

Views - 9174 Monday, 6 February 2017 00:06

King Elara’s observance of the Rule of Law to the letter According to a story in Sri Lanka’s great chronicle, Mahavansa, a Tamil usurper named Elara of the Uju tribe had invaded Lanka in the 2nd century BCE and ruled the northern par


In defence of the Auditor General: The Govt. should not blind its ‘third eye’

Views - 7813 Monday, 30 January 2017 00:26

Auditor General Gamini Wijesinghe An Auditor General under fire by political authorities The Auditor General of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, a position created by its Constitution, has been of late at the rece


Steamrolling of Central Bank by Minister of Finance: An unsavoury development?

Views - 9112 Monday, 23 January 2017 00:38

An unsavoury rift between the Central Bank and Minister of Finance A growing rift between Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake and the senior management of the Central Bank is surfacing now, worrying both financial markets and prospective fo


GSP + may be restored but Sri Lanka has to act fast to harness its full benefits

Views - 7354 Monday, 16 January 2017 00:05

A positive report by EU on Sri Lanka A report published by the European Union or EU on 11 January 2017 (available at: http://trade.ec.europa.eu/doclib/html/155236.htm ) has concluded that Sri Lanka has completed all the requirements needed


When a Governor speaks like a Governor.....

Views - 8436 Monday, 9 January 2017 00:15

Central Bank Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy When a Governor speaks frankly, the market responds positively When a Governor of a central bank speaks like a Governor, he is sure to receive two types of response. His candid spe


Formalising economic management through Development Bill: Another communication failure by the Unity

Views - 7065 Monday, 2 January 2017 01:15

A development bill running into a messy situation The Unity Government managed to have its Budget 2017 passed in Parliament by a two third majority. From the public pronouncements which the top leaders had made, one could infer that it had boost


Economy 2017: The alarming signs should not be ignored

Views - 7624 Tuesday, 27 December 2016 00:05

Year 2017 marks two anniversaries The year 2017 dawns with two anniversaries. One is the sixth anniversary of this series analysing economic and related issues. The other is the second anniversary of the good governance government tha


Reform the Central Bank, but don’t erode its independence

Views - 6670 Monday, 19 December 2016 08:46

     Prime Minister wants a more independent Central Bank Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, in the economic policy statement he presented to Parliament in November 2015, pledged that his Government would ‘


Thriving in a digital age: Digital currencies pose the biggest threat to banks – Part III

Views - 5470 Monday, 5 December 2016 00:05

  This is the final part of a revised and improved version of a paper published in the Association for Professional Bankers 2016 Annual Convention Publication titled ‘Thriving in a Digital World’.  Part I of this paper


Thriving in a Digital Age: Digital currencies pose the biggest challenge to banks – Part II

Views - 5509 Monday, 28 November 2016 00:01

  This is part II of a revised version of the paper published in the annual publication of the Association of Professional Bankers or APB under the title ‘Thriving in a Digital World’ in conjunction with its 28th anniversa


Today's Columnists

Chulla Setthi Jathaka: An entrepreneur creating magical wealth out of nothing

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

For over a decade, I have travelled as a lending banker to every corner of the country and it has exposed me to thousands of entrepreneurs. My close interaction with them helped me to understand their attributes, qualities and characteristics that se


How not to do a strategic plan

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

‘Strategic planning and budgeting’ are vital items in the corporate agenda of any organisation. As a CFO and a member of the senior leadership team of several large organisations both in the private sector and the public sector, I have tasted the


What is needed to complete the revolution of 8 January

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

The challenge before our country is to institute a transformed system, because most of our political ills are a functional result of a poor system. Our politicians and our political culture is a dependent outcome of bad system. This systemic change,


Political moves after 10 February

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Who or what is the main political problem facing Sri Lanka today? The answer you give will reveal where you are on the ideological spectrum, and will in turn have determined your answer. Here are the answers that form the political spectrum of our s


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