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'Lankan organic exporters could be strategic suppliers to EU'

Dec 5 (SO) European Union (EU) is by far the fastest-growing organic market worldwide to which SL organic exporters could become strategic suppliers, said Chief Delegate of the Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in SL Andreas Hergenröther. The global market for organic food reached Euro 106 billion in 2019, Hergenröther said while addressing a seminar to raise awareness among potential exporters and industry representatives to increase export capacities more..

CPC cancels Nigerian crude oil contract over non-performance

Dec 5 (ST) Following the failure to supply a stock of crude oil on time, the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) has cancelled a contract granted to M/s Conscio Ltd, Nigeria to import Murban crude oil over nine months, the CPC said. This Nigerian company had entered into an agreement with the corporation to supply 2,062,500 barrels of crude oil for the period June 2021 to Feb 2022 in several shipments more..

Biz frustrated over stressors on exchange rate

Dec 5 (ST) Frustrated businesses are starting to relocate while certain foreign investors are pulling the plug on intended investments or rethinking their strategies in Sri Lanka, industry officials say. “It’s the worst of times,” a top CEO of an exporting company told Business Times on Wednesday. A senior banker confirmed this noting that certain foreign investments have pulled out already on account of the exchange rate uncertainty and overall inconsistencies in the country’s economy. more..

Govt’s change of heart leaves farmers in the lurch

Dec 5 (ST) Sri Lanka’s agriculture sector as a whole is in trouble despite lifting the ban on chemical fertiliser imports and the country is faced with the crisis in the global market where prices have skyrocketed leaving local farmers out in the cold with no subsidies for cover. There is a natural trend for prices to increase but this year it has been peculiar since China stopped exports and Russia has limited its exports of fertiliser to the rest of the world, Weed Science expert and more..

Pakistan police arrest 113 over barbaric murder of Lankan factory manager

Dec 5 (ST) Sri Lanka yesterday called for a full investigation into the brutal killing of a 48-year-old Lankan factory manager in Pakistan by a politically motivated once banned group as widespread local and international condemnation continues. Pakistani authorities moved in swiftly to arrest 113 people over last Friday’s beating and then burning alive of Priyantha Kumara, a resident of Ganemulla in the Gampaha district. more..

Talks with India for two more swap deals totalling US$ 1.4 bn

Dec 5 (ST) Govt is holding talks with India for two separate currency swap arrangements to the value of US$ 1.4 bil, in addition to an already announced US$ 500 m credit line. CB Governor Ajith Nivad Cabraal said the terms and conditions for the new US$ 1.4 b swap deal would be disclosed after the talks were completed. He said the latest swap would help to boost SL’s foreign reserves. Talks on the swap arrangement are in addition to negotiations for $500m Indian credit line for fuel purchases. more..

Leading Singaporean edtech platform provides Lankan tutors with global...

Dec 5 (Island) Tutopiya, a Singapore-based edtech platform, recently announced the official launch of its tutor recruitment drive in SL. This drive comes at a time when online tuition is necessary amidst the pandemic and social distancing measures across the globe. Tutopiya works with a network of experienced tutors to bring online tuition to students at home. Tutopiya specialises in teaching int'l school students from grades 1-12 focusing on the IGCSE and A levels by Cambridge & Pearson more..

PCR testing at ports of entry crucial

Dec 5 (CT) December is the month of festivities and gaiety. But like last year, the end of 2021 has not been easy on the world and for the paradise isle of Sri Lanka which was assailed by two viral variants of deadly COVID-19, Alpha and Delta variants, leaving over 14,399 dead and boosting the daily case load till it has reached a whopping 565,471 by 3 Dec. Having controlled the Delta wave by end Sept 2021 at great cost to even more..

'Tourism SMEs overlooked in 2022 Budget'

Dec 5 (SO) 2022 Budget has failed to provide the much needed fillip to the small and medium sector players of the pandemic-hit tourism industry, said SME sector industry personnel who pinned hopes on the expenditure and revenue statement for some consolation. “SMEs, the most affected segment of the global pandemic, have been neglected,” said Kegalle District Hotels Association President Nayana Kumar, calling on the authorities to act fast to save lucrative industry which is now in doldrums. more..

Power breakdown in November: CID commences probe

Dec 5 (TM) CID has commenced a probe into a complaint filed by the CEB over a suspected act of sabotage that had caused a power breakdown in many parts of the country last Monday (29). Police Media Spokesperson said that CID was recording statements from officials and engineers at the CEB regarding the complaint filed by the CEB management about the power outage last Monday. “Police had not received any complaint with regard to the islandwide power outage that occurred more..

Renewable energy generation: Adani to take billion-dollar Mannar project

Dec 5 (TM) India’s Adani Group, owned by Indian business tycoon Gautam Adani, is to develop a 1,000 MW wind power project in Mannar valued at over $ 1 billion. It is also learnt that Adani is looking at developing a second wind power project in another location in the Northern Province – Pooneryn. The Sunday Morning exclusively reported Adani’s interest in entering the renewable energy generation sector in the Northern Province. more..

Investors want CB to untangle regulations

Dec 5 (ST) Free trade zone exporters have raised crucial issues with the Central Bank (CB) as they fear if their problems are not addressed they would have to pull out. But it is learnt that the regulator seems to remain optimistic of investor confidence. While some foreign investors were busy in India finding places to relocate to from SL, exporters in Colombo had a crucial meeting with the CB Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal on Tuesday where other bank officials were also present raising more..

Power Outage Deliberate: CEB Chairman

Dec 5 (CT) The major islandwide power outage on Friday was caused on purpose by a group of individuals, Chairman of CEB M.C. Ferdinando claimed. “I cannot claim that this was done as an act of sabotage or treason, but what I can affirm is that the power outage at 11 a.m. on Friday was caused on purpose,” he said. It was reported that the power outage occurred as a result of a technical failure at a key transmission line. When asked why some parts of the country were experiencing more..

Omicron is here; but don’t panic, says top expert

Dec 5 (ST) “Don’t panic. Vaccines work. Get vaccinated to prevent hospitalization, severe disease and death and take all preventive measures,” is the advice of Prof. Neelika Malavige. It is Prof. Malavige’s team that worked exhaustively night and day to perform genetic sequencing in over two days and alerted the Health Ministry on Friday morning that Omicron has arrived in the country. “96 test samples can be loaded for a run of more..

Dr Padeniya prevented from being GMOA President

Dec 5 (ST) The Moratuwa District Court has issued an interim injunction preventing Dr Anuruddha Padeniya from being appointed as President of the GMOA uncontested for the 2021/2022 period. The interim order prevents the GMOA’s Election Committee chairman from installing Dr Padeniya as the President for 2021/2022. The order by District Judge Daminda Weligodapitiya has prevented Dr Padeniya from referring to himself as the GMOA’s President or functioning in that role for more..

Writing on the wall: Yugadanavi name board disappears

Dec 5 (ST) With the US-based energy firm, New Fortress Energy Inc. announcing that it had executed a definitive agreement with the SL Govt to invest in West Coast Power Limited, which owns the 310 MW Yugadanavi Power Plant at Kerawalapitiya, the original nameboard of the Yugadanavi plant has been covered or painted over as seen in the picture taken yesterday. The file picture on top shows the name board clearly. This has given rise to speculation over a name change. more..

Black Friday blues: Govt hit by tsunami of crises

Dec 5 (ST) For Sri Lankans, it was the worst possible start to the first weekend of December: On Friday, they woke up to the news that the Govt had directed the country’s two LP Gas distributers to suspend gas distribution until safety concerns were addressed. Later that morning, they experienced an island-wide blackout that lasted well into the night in some areas. To compound matters, a large number even suffered water cuts because power more..

Covid variant Omicron is here; let’s not panic

Dec 6 (DM) Since the Covid-19 epidemic broke in early 2020 we have gradually become used to living in uncertainty. During the early days of the epidemic the question we asked each other was, if there was someone known to us who had definitely caught the virus. Even though a travel ban was implemented, a number of persons violated the ban using persons of influence they knew to get curfew passes etc. Then the second waves struck during the Sinhala and Tamil New Year festivities, thanks to the lifting more..

Sri Lanka in the literal age of darkness

Dec 6 (ST) Is it not enough that politicians both in the Govt and the Opposition are squabbling in the dark, literally so, as the Parliament chamber joined the rest of the nation this Friday with a full day blackout crippling essential functions? Do we not suffer enough by politicians and state agents disregarding the law and claiming privilege in so doing? Should we also have to undergo the ignominy of the Chief Opposition Whip no less, requesting the Govt to allow MPs to enter more..

Prisdang Chumsai: Thai Prince who lived in Ceylon

Dec 6 (Roar) Off the coast of Matara in the South of Sri Lanka, across the Polhena beach, is the little Galgodiyana island on which remains the ruins of a stupa — but one that differs in style from other Buddhist structures of ancient SL. Few remember that the island — now a popular snorkelling location — was actually once home to a Thai prince who, after being falsely accused of plotting to overthrow the monarch at home, more..

Lankan households gripped by gas blast fear psychosis

Dec 6 (ST) The spate of gas explosions in the nation’s households has gripped the public with fear, leaving many to wonder with alarm whether it will be kingdom come for them next time they switch on the kitchen light. It was a flashback to the dreaded days when terror bombs exploded on the streets, and people who left their homes in the morn never knew whether they would return coffined home in the evening. It has been made worse now, despite having a govt elected to power with pledges more..

Question for the Week answered by Justice C.V.Wigneswaran, MP

Dec 6 (DM) Q: Recently in Parliament the words Tamil Homeland and Tamil National Leader Prabhakaran were used and objected to by the Govt Members who wanted those words to be expunged from the Hansard. The Chairman of that time Velukumar MP had promised to bring the matter to the notice of the Speaker. He did not make any decision on the objections raised. Do you not think this Country is a Sinhala Country and that a Terrorist Leader who killed so many innocents more..

'Like tying a time bomb to the leg of a housewife'

Dec 6 (TM) Liquefied Petroleum Gas, known commonly as LPG, is used in nearly every household for the preparation of food, and is by and large considered an essential commodity. However, in April 2021, when Litro Gas Lanka – the state-owned entity in the country’s LPG market – introduced a new 18-litre gas cylinder to the market, the CAA raised concerns about the company changing the composition of gas more..

Editorial: House where law is silent

Dec 6 (Island) Time was when fish markets were synonymous with brawls replete with raw filth liberally exchanged by warring parties. But today they have apparently taken second place to Parliament where donnybrooks are concerned. When fishmongers trade blows, the police can intervene to maintain the peace, and bundle them into paddy wagons. But when the honourable MPs clash, the police are helpless; they just look on. There are times when even the police more..

Stick before the carrot, cart before the horse

Dec 6 (TM) It would be safe to say that SL is on trial with the very future of the country at stake; yet, as SL’s tailspin nose-dives into a vortex, the solution – leadership – seems increasingly yoked to political arm twisting, that is spreading across all levels of governance like a bad rash. The bottom line is that such a pervasive attitude that seems to colour virtually everything that the Govt does, and which results in everything it touches turning to the very antithesis of King Midas’s touch, more..

ලාල් කාන්ත

Severe punishment for non-biodegradable lunch sheet manufacturers

Dec 6 (CT) The repercussions of the disposal of polythene lunch sheets on the environment was most definitely the primary reason for the ban imposed on the production of non-biodegradable polythene lunch sheets, but this has not been completely acknowledged by producers who are ignorant towards the purpose for such ban and continue their productions with the sole motive to profit at the cost of destroying the environment. Approximately 106 tonnes have been used more..

Further on Budget Speech: Cost of living, public debt and collective responsibility

Dec 6 (Island) Minister Basil Rajapaksa is correct in identifying international drug mafia, and fraudulent business operations as challenges to the country, whether it should be stated in a Budget Speech or not. However, just after that and on the same breadth he is castigating social activists and civil society organisations as forces detrimental to the country, saying the following. “Similarly, agents of foreign powers disguised as social activists are exerting a considerable pressure more..

Tragic tale of tea and roti; many estate workers go to sleep hungry

Dec 6 (ST) The hard-working and lowly paid plantation workers were shocked by the recent steep increase in the price of wheat flour and other essential items. In tea plantation estates, families are finding it difficult to have even two meals a day since their monthly salaries are not enough to meet the increasing cost of living. In many families, roti made of wheat flour and scraped coconut, is a staple food item. more..

Private jet for Wanindu

Dec 6 (Island) Last year, prior to Lanka Premier League, Wanindu Hasaranga was just another up and coming cricketer. Lead up to this year’s event, he’s world’s number one ranked bowler, globetrotting in style. Franchise owners are paying mega bucks to hire the services of the leg-spinner and yesterday he landed in Katunayake ahead of the LPL opener on a private jet. Hasaranga had played the final of the T-10 League in Abu Dhabi on Saturday and he was back in the team hotel in Colombo lead up to more..

SL Test side looks safe under captain Dimuth

Dec 6 (ST) SL saw the light at the end of the tunnel when they registered a 2-0 victory in the 2-match Test series against the WI at Galle Int'l Stadium on Friday. This helped them retained the Sobers-Tissera Trophy and propelled them to 24 points at the World Test Championship. The inspiring leadership of Dimuth Karunaratne played a major role in this win. A vastly matured skipper was able to get the best out of the young bunch by making them to understand the role they were entrusted. more..

Chaos galore, but IPG wants contract extended

Dec 6 (ST) The event rights holder of the Lanka Premier League (LPL) wants five years of matching rights for the tournament at the conclusion of the current five-year contract to recover their investment. A letter sent by Anil Mohan, the founder of the Dubai-based The IPG Group, who owns the event rights up until 2024, claims the company has incurred a massive loss of US$ 2.4mn, around Rs 500mn, despite SLC waiving off of Rs 31.4mn more..

Local coaches unreasonably oppose three productive foreign counterparts

Dec 6 (ST) In the ongoing battle between local and foreign coaches, and locals succeeding their foreign competitors, the fired foreign trio had still made a case to remain on voluntary and unpaid basis till end of April, to make sure their athletes participate in the competitions, but that too, had been terminated. Despite all these pleas, including from their students, Director General to the Ministry of Sports has remained stubborn that the foreign resource personnel contracts cannot be renewed. more..

Youth dies due to mortar shell explosion in Paranthan

Dec 6 (AD) One person has died following an explosion today (5) when he reportedly attempted to cut a mortar shell using an electric grinder at Umayalpuram in Paranthan. The explosion had occurred when the 25-year-old youth had attempted to cut the mortar shell, which had been found from an abandoned area, inside his residence in Umayalpuram. Youth’s 13-year-old brother, who was nearby when the incident occurred, has also sustained injuries in the explosion while more..

News බුල ටිං: පාර්ලිමේන්තුව රෙස්ලින් පිටියක් කරමු

SL edge England to take 2-1 series lead

Dec 6 (CT) In a low scoring game, SL beat England by 2 wickets in the third Youth ODI at the SSC yesterday to take a 2-1 lead in the series. England won the toss and electing to bat were bowled out for a below par 114 runs in 34.3 overs. Rehan Ahamed (19), Alex Horton (18), James Coles (16), Tom Prest (13) and James Sales (13) helped to build their inning. Skipper Dunith Wellalage claimed 3 wickets for 13 runs, while Traveen Mathew, Raveen De Silva and Yasiru Rodrigo claimed 2 wickets each. more..

80,394 persons vaccinated against COVID-19

Dec 6 (FT) COVID-19 vaccines were administered to 80,394 persons on Saturday, of which 73,454 persons received a booster dose. Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine is being administered as the booster dose in the country and a total of 928,051 persons have received the third dose. The first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine has been administered to 15,943,166 persons and the second dose has been administered to 13,763,844 persons. As of 3 Dec, 74.13% of the country’s population more..

CB uses carrot and stick approach to boost forex

Dec 6 (FT) The Central Bank is determined to crackdown on illegal transfers to restore depleted foreign exchange reserves and has expressed confidence over multiple initiatives rolled out to rebound worker remittances. “We are using both the carrot and stick approach. The carrot is what we offer additionally to the migrant workers to encourage them to use the formal channels to remit funds, whilst the stick is the prosecution of more..

Video: Underworld hit suspected as person is hacked to death in Keselwatta

Dec 6 (AD) Police are investigating suspected underworld links to the brutal murder of an individual on Old Moor Street in Keselwatta police area late last night (4). A person had been hacked to death at around 11 p.m. last night on Old Moor Street. Victim has been identified as 33-year-old Mohamed Kamil Fawaz, a resident of Col 12. Police suspect that the murder was the result of a rivalry between to criminal groups and also suspect that the hit was carried out by members of the underworld more..

Brother urges social media users to stop circulating videos of killing

Dec 6 (DM) The brother of SL factory manager Priyantha Kumara Diyawadana, who was brutally murdered in Sialkot, Pakistan, has urged media and social media users to stop circulating videos of his brother's brutal torture and murder. Videos of the murder of Priyantha are still circulating widely on social media. Priyantha's brother said that the spread of videos of his brother's murder on social media networks has caused shock and distress to his family, especially to his 2 children & wife. more..