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SL and Botswana to collaborate on diamond and jewellery trade

Dec 6 (TM) Highlighting the importance of collaborations between the diamond industry of Botswana and the gem and jewelry industry of Sri Lanka, SL High Commissioner for South Africa Sirisena Amarasekara and Minister of International Affairs and Cooperation of Botswana Dr. Lemogang Kwape agreed to study the potentials of these industries to generate more employment opportunities and achieve greater economic growth. This discussion took place when more..

'My husband was not mad to tear any poster. I want justice'

Dec 6 (DM) Young Nilushi Kumara, the widow of Sri Lankan export manager Priyantha Kumara who was brutally massacred in Pakistan on Friday, has appealed to the Pakistani government for justice and compensation over her husband’s killing and urged for the safety of all Sri Lankans on Pakistani soil. Speaking to Daily Mirror on the eve of receiving her husband’s remains which will be flown in from Lahore on a special flight today, Nilushi said she demanded for answers more..

Remains of Priyantha Kumara arrives in SL

Will the odour prevent explosions?

Dec 7 (DM) Have the authorities solved the domestic gas related explosion issues? They ordered to stop distribution of gas until officials check the gas and then allowed distribution again. Why did they stop distribution and why did they later allow it to go ahead? What was the change made to the gas in between? What are they going to check- composition of the gas or pressure inside the cylinder or the odour additives? State Ministry for Co-operative Services and Consumer more..

Basil’s India visit & The economic fallout

Dec 7 (CT) Events become more important and focused in the context of their after effects. Criticism levelled before-hand will only be conjectures yet to become realities. Diplomatic initiatives demonstrate how a small neighbor state can successfully move towards a pro-active bilateral relationship interacting with other countries in the neighborhood OR even in the region, within the confines of available economic space. Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksa’s move to initiate a dialogue more..

Sialkot incident: Will Priyantha’s killers receive maximum punishment ?

Dec 7 (DM) On Dec 3, initial footage of a frenzied mob flocking around an individual on Wazirabad Road, Sialkot in Pakistan eventually beating him to death went viral on social media. The beating continued amidst chants of kaafir ke bachche me Quran ki ayatein dustbin mein fainki hain which translates to son of a Kaafir has thrown verses of Quran in the dustbin. Video evidence thereafter showed how the mob resorted to more..

TNA should turn to People to come out of political wilderness

Dec 7 (DM) At times one hits front page when one would not want to and for reasons one would not agree. TNA MP Sumanthiran had that unfortunate experience after their public meeting in Toronto, Canada was disrupted allegedly by a pro-LTTE group on Saturday (20). Sumanthiran who at times is shouted down in our parliament by Sinhala-Buddhist chauvinists as Tigers was this time shouted down and insulted by Tigers in far off Canada. Focus here is not about that more..

Desperate times or private gold rush

Dec 7 (ST) However much money CB Governor Cabraal prints or how much is squeezed into Finance Minister Rajapaksa’s bowl by neighbouring India during his mercy mission this week, the country still needs hard currency. Right now SL’s foreign reserves are hovering round $1.3 billion, it is said, and ready to dip further. What is terribly disconcerting is the direction in which the arrow head is currently pointing suggesting that our foreign reserves could turn even worse by the time more..

'Conventional budget with no future prospects'

Dec 7 (CT) MP Ven. Athuruliye Rathana Thera, said the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 has no vision and no objectives that correspond with Prez Rajapaksa’s Election manifesto, and also it is a very conventional Budget that each and every Govt has produced without hurting the public. He stated that, while the Budget appears to be a people-centric Budget, it does not meet the country’s future plans, such as promoting renewable more..

Make CPC report public

Dec 7 (CT) Yesterday, another allegedly LPG (cooking gas) victim, this time from Matale, died, taking the death toll from such accidents to two, together with three injuries and damages to several houses and property, including to restaurants and at least one hotel, having had been reported since 4 Nov. In connection with these accidents, this newspaper in its editorial of Wednesday (1), to quote excerpts said, ‘Opposition and SJB MP Nalin Bandara Jayamaha speaking in Parliament more..

Extreme lessons from Pakistan

Dec 7 (TM) The heart-wrenching incident of a Sri Lankan national being beaten to death and his lifeless body being set on fire over an alleged act amounting to blasphemy last week has sparked an international discussion and debate. Even though the tragic death of the Sri Lankan is our main concern as Sri Lankans, to the international community, this incident is indicative of the prevailing and persisting religious extremism in Pakistan and in other parts of the world. more..

Face the Nation

TISL concerned over delay in RTI Commission appointments

Dec 7 (FT) Transparency International SL (TISL) yesterday expressed concern over the delay in the appointment of Right to Information Commission. It said the Right to Information (RTI) Commission, which is the central appellate and monitoring body established under the Right to Information Act of Sri Lanka, was one of the most important independent public institutions in the country today. The Commission is empowered to play a critical role under the RTI law, including more..

The Energy Crisis hits the Kitchen

Dec 7 (Island) Close on the heels of the grave hit on the wallet of consumers due to the hefty hike in the LPG prices, a new crisis by way of safety of use of even the expensive gas has created an even greater problem. As recently as Aug 2021, I published an article titled. Wallowing in the Fossil Fuel Trap in The Island, where I dealt with the entire spectrum of energy, While the impact on areas like electricity and transport fuels by this over-dependence on imported fossil fuels are kept under wraps more..

Safeguards in cyberspace

Dec 7 (TM) Having to provide a name, date of birth, mobile number, or email address, when installing apps/software, or having to permit the collection of internet-related data by websites when using the internet, are extremely common experiences nowadays, and sometimes, we have to grant access to what is stored on our devices. Unfortunately, we have very little freedom to choose what information we share, and more..

MCA felicitate Mahela and Sanga

Dec 7 (CT) Mahela Jayawardena and Kumar Sangakkara were felicitated by the MCA at a glittering ceremony amongst a distinguished gathering, including past MCA Presidents, held on Thursday (2) at the MCA Legends New Wing. Jayawardena was honored for being inducted to the prestigious ICC Hall of Fame and Kumar Sangakkara for being the first non-British to be selected as the President of Maryleborne Cricket Club. (MCC). more..

BIL invests $ 114 m in Port City

Dec 7 (FT) Browns Investments PLC (BIL) on Friday revealed that it had already invested $ 114 million, or Rs. 23.2 billion, so far for multiple projects in the Port City with commitment for a further $ 86 million in the next two years. The payment through BIL's subsidiaries is after securing a 99-year leasehold rights of identified plots (over 74,400 square metres) at the Port City by entering into Indentures of leases on 2 December with the Colombo Port Economic Commission. more..

Sri Lankan Youth Para athletes create history

Dec 7 (DN) Sri Lankan Youth Para athletes created history at the Asian Youth Para Games in Bahrain when they clinched best-ever overall medal haul with an outstanding performance. Sri Lanka bagged 12 medals (four Gold, four Silver, four Bronze) at this meet which ended yesterday. The 16 year old Galina Basnayake finished the meet with another gold in 50m free style yesterday and that was her third gold. more..

Editorial: New laws alone won’t do

Dec 7 (Island) The government is keen to amend the election laws to provide for restrictions on campaign expenditure, and President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has given the Legal Draftsman necessary instructions in this regard, Media Minister Dallas Alahapperuma has reportedly said. It is hoped that the new laws to be made will also make it mandatory for candidates and political parties to disclose sources of their campaign finance, and the amounts of funds they receive by way of donations. more..

Use pandemic as opportunity to unleash reforms for sustainable growth: CCC

Dec 7 (FT) Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Chairman Vish Govindasamy urged the Govt and the country at large to use the pandemic as an opportunity to implement much-needed reforms to ensure sustainable economic growth. “It is said that one must not let a crisis go to waste and we feel this is an important opportunity for the SL economy to bring in the reforms needed to ensure sustainable economic growth and development,” Govindasamy told the inauguration of the CCC’s 2-day more..

නාගානන්ද කොඩිතුවක්කු

LPL: Bhanuka and spinners guide Galle Gladiators home in opener

Dec 7 (CT) Skipper Bhanuka Rajapaksa set the stage on fire with the bat as Galle Gladiators beat defending Champions Jaffna Kings by 54 runs in the opening match of the second edition of the Lanka Premier League at RPS, Colombo on Sunday. Put into bat the skipper led from the front with a breathtaking 56 runs off 31 balls, hitting 6 fours and 3 sixes, before the spinners completed the job for the Galle Gladiators. Dhanushka Gunathilaka and Kusal Mendis opened the innings for more..

LPL: Phil Salt sets up big win for Dambulla Giants

Dec 7 (Island) Phil Salt hammered 64 in 27 balls and Nuwan Pradeep and Ramesh Mendis picked up three wickets each as Dambulla Giants beat Kandy Warriors by 20 runs in the second match of the Lanka Premier League played at the Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Monday. In reply to Giants’ 190 runs, Warriors could post only 170 as Padeep and Mendis shared six wickets between them. Phil Salt was the Player of the Match for his 64 which was inclusive of four fours and five sixes. more..

Heavy price tag for scarce home gadgets, stationery, spare parts

Dec 7 (ST) Sri Lankans will face continuing increases in prices and shortages of stationery, vehicle spare parts and home appliances as a result of the US dollar crisis, importers warn. Forex reserves in the indebted country have depleted to unprecedented levels. What is left is enough for 1.3 months of exports. An int'l sovereign bond repayment is due on Jan 18. Monthly consumer inflation is continuing to rise. more..

Sialkot incident will have no impact on the two countries’ friendly ties: SL HC

Dec 7 (DM) Sri Lankan High Commissioner Mohan Vijay Vikrama has assured that the Sialkot lynching will have no impact on the two countries' amicable relations. "Pakistan and Sri Lanka are friends and will remain friends. I assure you that this incident will not affect our relations," said the SL high commissioner. SL's high commissioner praised the Pakistani govt's support and thanked the Pakistani people for their sympathies and condolences, stating that the incident was unfortunate. more..

Study SEC Act in depth to avoid non-compliance: Dumith Fernando

Dec 7 (TM) The new Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) Act No. 19 of 2021 should be carefully studied by the listed companies to avoid running into risks of not complying with the stringent requirements imposed under the new Act, CSE Chairman Dumith Fernando noted during an event held last evening (6) under the title The SEC Act No. 19 of 2021: Aspects Pertaining to Listed Companies. He stated that the new Act allows for market development with the introduction of new more..

India takes Jaffna project away from Chinese company

Dec 7 (TM) A Chinese company, that had been awarded the tender to develop three hybrid power plants in the Delft, Nagadeepa, and Analthivu islands off the Jaffna peninsula, is likely to lose this contract as the project, which was previously being conducted under a loan disbursed by an international financial institution, will now likely be carried out under grant funding from the Govt of India instead. more..

Tourism investors at Mawella between the devil and the deep blue sea

Dec 7 (FT) Tourism investors are in a quandary as to what would happen to their beach properties as two State agencies have locked horns for and against building two 60 m breakwaters at the Mawella Bay. SL Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) has categorically pointed out recently to the Coast Conservation and Coastal Resource Management Department (CCD) that their no objection tag to construction in the Mawella Bay was on the basis that there was no impact to tourism. more..

PUCSL urged to reform LPG/electricity sectors

Dec 7 (TM) Foundation for People’s Rights Protection (FPRP) wrote to the Public Utilities Commission of SL (PUCSL), requesting that the PUCSL focus on reforming the regulations surrounding liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and the electricity sectors in SL. “The public were heavily inconvenienced due to the islandwide power outage on 3 Dec. This occurred on the day that the country’s LPG suppliers announced that they would halt supplies to the market, over allegations more..

Nivard rallies private sector for post-pandemic revival

Dec 7 (FT) CB Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal yesterday called on the private sector to join hands to revive Sri Lanka from the challenges of COVID-19 towards a sustainable growth trajectory. Delivering the keynote at the opening day of SL Economic Summit Springboard for revival: Opportunity to reset organised by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Governor acknowledged the challenges before the country, more..

IMF-led debt restructuring process is less painful: CBSL Ex-Governor

Dec 7 (CT) SL Govt should take steps to resolve its prevailing balance of payments crisis in a manner that has a minimal impact (less painful way) on the economic and social affairs of the Country, former Governor of the Central Bank of SL (CBSL) Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy said yesterday. He said the CBSL should look at the next best option if its recent six-month roadmap is not practical. He also pointed out that it would be more effective to focus on a debt restructuring process led by the IMF. more..

Stock market stages strong recovery after early dip

Dec 7 (FT) The Colombo stock market yesterday closed on the up, thanks to a strong recovery following a sharp dip in early morning trade. The All Share Price Index finished with a 46 points gain or 0.4%, and the S&P SL20 rose by 1.6% or over 62 points. Turnover was healthy at Rs. 6.7 billion involving 253 million shares. Asia Securities said the ASPI crossed the 11,000-mark once again and returned to positive territory after witnessing three sessions of losses, more..

Economists, biz leaders share insights to SL’s opportunity to reset in new global norm

Dec 7 (FT) Top economists and private sector leaders yesterday shared key insights to SL’s Opportunity to Reset in the New Global Norm – the opening session of the SL Economic Summit 2021. Former CB Governor Dr. Indrajit Coomaraswamy listed opportunities as SL's strategic geographical location with Asia being the most dynamic in the world despite COVID-19, strong human resource base, more..

19,633 persons vaccinated against COVID-19

Dec 7 (FT) COVID-19 vaccines were administered to 19,633 persons on Sunday and 74.17% of the country’s population has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. 64.03% of the population has received the second dose as well. The first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine has been administered to 15,945,546 persons and the second dose has been administered to 13,766,610 persons. The third dose has been administered to 956,946 persons. This includes 17,644 vaccinated on Sunday. more..

741 persons test positive for COVID-19

Dec 7 (FT) Sri Lanka’s COVID-19 case count rose to 568,423 with the detection of 741 COVID-19 patients yesterday. Yesterday’s detections include 739 persons from the New Year cluster and two overseas arrivals. According to the Health Promotion Bureau, 6,191 PCR tests were conducted yesterday. The previous day, 7,975 PCR tests and 3,464 rapid antigen tests were carried out. Of the 746 COVID-19 patients detected, 742 were from the New Year cluster and four were SL overseas arrivals. more..

CEB senior engineers slam CEB Engineers’ Union

Dec 7 (TM) CEB Senior Engineers’ Association (CEBSEA) yesterday called for an impartial investigation into the unusual power outages that occurred in the country in the last two weeks, and claimed that CEB Engineers’ Union’s (CEBEU) actions in connection with the matter are suspicious. “We ask for an impartial investigation into the unusual power outages that occurred in the last two weeks, including most recent one on 3 Dec more..

North Western Province Governor Raja Collure passes away

Dec 7 (AD) Raja Collure, the governor of the North Western Province, has passed away while receiving treatment for COVID-19. He was aged 83 at the time of his demise. Last Friday (3), it was confirmed that Collure had contracted the novel coronavirus. He had tested positive for the virus following a PCR test. He had passed away this morning while receiving treatment at the KDU Hospital. Mr. Collure was also the Chairman of the Communist Party of Sri Lanka. more..

CCC Economic Summit: Day 2 offers insights on leveraging opportunities for revival

Dec 7 (FT) The foremost and most anticipated economic event of Sri Lanka, the SL Economic Summit 2021 continues for the second successive day on 7 Dec, under the theme Springboard for revival: Opportunity to reset. Day one of the Summit delivered on expectations, with a high-profile line-up of speakers and panellists generating insightful and thought-provoking discussions on setting a sustainable course for SL’s economic revival and development, including the urgent need for more..

Gas explosion probe says blame lies largely with faulty accessories

Dec 7 (EN) A committee appointed by SL’s president to investigate a series of cooking gas explosions has found that substandard accessories such as hoses and regulators as well as the absence of odour were largely to blame. A series of liquid petroleum (LP) gas related fires and explosions reported around the island led to a quiet panic among the populace in recent weeks. A total of 458 incidents were reported all year, more..

Implications of data protection bill for individuals, businesses and innovation

Dec 7 (FT) Data protection is considered an esoteric subject, but it can have powerful effects in the emerging digital economy, where many, if not most, processes include databases and analytics. The use of data and insights extracted from data predates computers. The difference is that a lot more can be done with data, and more easily, now that computers are involved. Hospitals and dispensaries have long maintained medical records of patients. But there is a big difference between records maintained more..