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හිරු ටීවී පත්තරේ විස්තරේ

Treasuries yields fall across maturities

Feb 15 (EN) SL’s Treasury bill yields fell across maturities at Wednesday’s auction with all 135 billion rupees of bills sold, data from the state debt office showed. The 3-month yield fell 117 basis points to 9.79% with 30 billion rupees in bills offered and 38.35 billion sold. The 6-month yield fell 121 basis points to 9.86% with 45 billion rupees in bills offered 48 billion sold. The 12-month yield fell 71 basis points to 10.02%, with 60 billion rupees of bills offered and 48 billion rupees sold. more..

Vanavasi Rahula Thera calls for taxation of religious institutions

Feb 15 (FT) National Namal Uyana Founder Vanavasi Rahula Thera has proposed the taxation of religious leaders and institutions in the country. In a statement to the media yesterday, the Thera emphasised that the Govt should impose taxes on places of worship and religious institutions, mirroring the taxation imposed on the country’s general public. “Religious leaders are merely millionaires who are going untaxed. They too should be taxed similarly to other citizens,” he said. more..

73rd Air Force anniversary: SLAF aims to be more inclusive: Air Chief

Feb 15 (TM) SL Air Force plans to become a more inclusive force by increasing the intake of women and minorities to the force structure in the future, Air Force Commander Air Marshal Udeni Rajapaksa said yesterday. Responding to a question at a press conference regarding the upcoming 73rd anniversary of the SLAF (2 March), Air Marshal Rajapaksa said that the SLAF will endeavour to improve inclusivity of all communities as more..

Wildlife: 50,000 Species Meet the Needs of Billions Worldwide

Feb 15 (DM) Despite widespread criticism especially by some media groups which obviously have some vested interests, Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe – giving steady leadership to the heavily divided SLPP govt – is making steady progress in pulling Sri Lanka out of its worst ever economic and debt crisis. These moves come in an election year but some critics are alleging that the Prez might try to put off the elections by changing the Executive Presidential system of govt. more..

Pathfinder hosts diplomatic dialogue on good governance, corruption

Feb 15 (CT) Pathfinder Foundation (PF) hosted its third Dialogue with Diplomats in Colombo and deliberated on the topic Role of the Donor Community in Promoting Good Governance and Curbing Corruption in SL. Pathfinder Dialogue with Diplomats dialogue focused on significant contemporary issues as SL’s position has declined considerably in the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI), which ranks countries and territories based on how corrupt their public sector is perceived. more..

ඩලස් මාලිමාවට?

Favourable tapping conditions improve January rubber production

Feb 15 (DM) The local rubber production witnessed an improvement in January, due to the weather remaining somewhat favourable for tapping operations. However, a drop in prices was evident at the Colombo rubber auction, Forbes and Walker Commodity Brokers said in its monthly rubber market report. The drop in prices at the auction was attributed to the relatively soft demand, due to the looming geopolitical tension, long holiday season in Europe and 18% VAT levied on sales. more..

Aitken Spence records strong performance with Rs. 7.8 b EBITDA in 3Q

Feb 15 (FT) Aitken Spence reported an EBITDA (earnings before interest cost, tax, depreciation, and amortisation) of Rs. 7.8 billion for the third quarter of 2023/24, a growth of 11.8% over that of the third quarter of the previous year. Group’s EBIT (Earnings before total interest) for the quarter stood at Rs. 5.3 billion which was a year-on-year growth of 20.7%. Group achieved a Profit before Tax (PBT) in the third quarter of 2023/24, nearly doubling that of the same period of the previous year, more..

'Restructured SOEs to be converted into limited liability companies'

Feb 15 (Island) A new legislature would be in place by the middle of this year to restructure 130 State Owned Enterprises (SOE), which would not accommodate any political appointments to their Boards because they will be converted into limited liability companies, Head, State-Owned Enterprises Restructuring Unit (SOERU), Suresh Shah said. ‘At present, out of 130 SOEs in the country, 17 are non- operational but the Boards of directors more..

Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau plans to launch first-ever Buddhist Trail

Feb 15 (FT) SL Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) is gearing up to introduce a fresh tourism brand — the Buddhist Trail, to tap into the rich cultural and religious heritage of the country. The initiative aims to highlight SL’s deep-rooted Buddhist heritage and promote it as a prominent pilgrimage destination in a global scale. “Sri Lanka, as a Buddhist country, holds immense potential to establish a unique tourism brand that resonates globally,” SLTPB Chairman Chalaka Gajabahu told journalists. more..

ADB to help develop smart agriculture in Mahaweli Zones

Feb 15 (FT) Asian Development Bank has pledged to assist develop smart agriculture in Mahaweli Zones, following a request made by Minister Pavithra Wanniarachchi. She said the ADB has pledged to provide $ 8 million to introduce modern technology in the field of agriculture and livestock. During a recent discussion with the ADB Country Director Takafumi Kadona officials held at her office, Minister requested ADB to assist financial and new technology to the youth as they are keen on more..

Sri Lanka Tourism eyes 1 m Chinese tourists over next four years

Feb 15 (FT) Sri Lanka Tourism is setting its sights on welcoming one million Chinese travellers over the next four years through the China Project. Following a recent high-level delegation visit to China, the Chongqing Municipality has committed to sending one million Chinese travellers to SL within this timeframe. The China Project is spearheaded by the PM’s Office with a special focus on poverty alleviation and livelihood generation. more..

Dairy items’ potential price hikes will see low demand

Feb 15 (ST) With liquid milk subject to the 18 per cent value-added tax, consumers should expect a potential price increase in related dairy items. Earlier, the VAT was only applicable to powdered milk. In the past month, a litre of liquid milk has gone up in price by Rs. 30 and Rs. 50. “Butter, cheese etc. are already up in price. There would be further increases,” a dairy producer said. Conversely, market analysts point out that too many price increases in too many short periods will kill more..

Sri Lanka Junior Tennis stars advance to quarter-finals

Feb 15 (DN) Sri Lanka’s junior boys and girls team displayed outstanding performance against Lebanon at the ITF World Junior Asia/Oceania Pre Qualifying Tournament hosted by the SL Tennis Association at SLTA courts yesterday. The young talents, including Ashlin de Silva, Akesha Silva, and Sandithi Usgodaarachchi, excelled in both singles and doubles events, securing victories in their matches. In the boys’ category, SL faced Lebanon, with the SL team emerging victorious with a score of 2/1. more..

අර්ජුණ හා කෙහෙළියගේ දූවරුන්ගේ...

Bingiriya Investment Zone ready for Japanese investors: Dilum

Feb 15 (FT) State Minister Dilum Amunugama recently instructed the officials of the SL Board of Investment to facilitate and execute the second and third phases of the Bingiriya Investment Zone as soon as possible, targeting high-net-worth Japanese investors. After the Prez visited Japan, a large number of Japanese investors were looking forward to investing in this country. Minister also informed the officials to provide the necessary facilities to start their projects as soon as they arrive in SL. more..

Strong sector performances propel Sunshine Holdings’ earnings by 44.2% to Rs. 5.5 b

Feb 15 (FT) Diversified Sri Lankan conglomerate Sunshine Holdings PLC (CSE: SUN) has recorded a consolidated revenue of Rs. 42.4 billion during the first nine months of the current financial year (9MFY24). Amidst the backdrop of a moderately stable macroeconomic conditions, the Group has reported solid top-line and bottom-line growth of 10% and 44% YoY with Profit after tax (PAT) increased to Rs. 5.5 billion as a result of business growth & lower finance costs during more..

Nissanka and Avishka blitz Afghanistan in Sri Lanka's clean sweep

Feb 15 (CI) SL made light work of a potentially tricky target of 267, running it down in just 35.2 overs as they completed a dominant seven-wicket win in the third and final ODI in Pallekele, and with it secured a 3-0 whitewash of the series. Pathum Nissanka recorded his second century in three games to become the highest run-scorer in a three-match series for SL with 346 runs. Here he racked up a 101-ball 118, and more..

Sri Lanka Inter Club Blitz Chess Championship 2023

Feb 15 (ST) Sri Lanka Inter Club Blitz Chess Championship brought the chess community to life at St. John’s College in Nugegoda. Proudly orchestrated by the Chess Federation of Sri Lanka, this electrifying event featured a total cash fund of Rs 123,000.00, complemented by certificates, medals, and the glittering trophies that awaited the champions. Once again, the championship was fervently contested, with separate competitions for both open and women’s categories. more..

Editorial: When Scrooges play Santa

Feb 15 (Island) Rajapaksa-Wickremesinghe govt is playing Santa obviously with an eye to the next presidential election. It is allocating public funds with a generous hand for poor relief, and giving away state land. Needy families are to be given 20 kilos of rice each for the coming festive season. Successive govts have showered election bribes on electors, especially the ones in dire financial straits. Why govts evince a keen interest in addressing problems such as poverty and landlessness, more..

ෆීල්ඩ් මාෂල් සරත් ෆොන්සේකා

Taxing knowledge

Feb 15 (ST) I just couldn’t believe it! We have heard – over the years – of how the IMF tells govts what to do as a precondition to seeking IMF facilities. In such instances, the IMF has rejected the notion that it interferes in the workings of the govt but sadly the truth lies elsewhere. In the Sri Lankan case, just as the country celebrated its 76th year of independence from centuries of colonial rule, such a situation has arisen, however much the IMF would choose to deny it. more..

Unionised heart of stone

Feb 15 (TM) The medical trade union collective representing a range of health sector professionals, including supplementary to medicine and paramedical services who were engaged in a strike for days, yesterday grew a heart and decided to call off their protest following meeting between authorities and them, on condition that they will get written assurances from the Govt of a continued dialogue regarding their demands. Strike caused much grief for those who flock to more..

About that jack in the bus

Feb 15 (TM) The arrest spree that started recently targeting those abusing females and children, in public transport, has attracted commendation from the public. Many support the authorities’ efforts aimed at addressing this long-drawn-out social issue, while emphasising the importance of stringent legal action against offenders. Last week, it was reported that the Police had initiated an islandwide operation to more..

JVP’s unmistakable turn

Feb 15 (GV) Amid the buzz surrounding the presidential race this year, the visit of the JVP-led NPP to India has raised much attention. As SL plunged into a historic economic crisis, its political stability deteriorated. People’s hopes in terms of mainstream political parties have plummeted. Against this backdrop, expectations have turned towards alternative forces that are not yet in power. In a survey conducted by the IHP, JVP leader Anura Kumara Dissanayaka was seen as more..

Can we build a world-class city with third-world public transport?

Feb 15 (DM) Colombo is a city in a hurry. New hotels, shopping malls and highways are mushrooming everywhere, and the skyline keeps growing upwards, promising to take us to a world-class future. I went to Galle Face and Port City recently to soak in the Global City in progress. As I was admiring a brightly-lit skyscraper, I was jolted back to reality by a rickety old bus pulling up in front of it. Somehow, the blueprint to make Colombo world-class seems to have forgotten all about more..

Suraksha student insurance scheme hangs in the balance

Feb 15 (CT) From the moment the President mentioned that necessary provision has been made in respect of the Suraksha Student Insurance scheme for 2024 in his Budget speech to Parliament last year scores of parents and students alike were under the impression that this was a Scheme that has been in operation for some time. But, what was evident from the Prez’s Budget speech was that the activation of this scheme has been stalled more..

Issue of colourism and whitening creams

Feb 15 (CT) In a country where beauty standards are often dictated by unrealistic ideals perpetuated by the media, it’s no surprise that many individuals, particularly women and girls, feel pressured to conform to these standards. One such pressure revolves around skin colour, where fair complexion is often glorified while darker skin tones are marginalised. This societal obsession with lighter skin has not only fuelled insecurities but has also become a lucrative opportunity for scammers more..

Akin to deck chairs on the Titanic

Feb 15 (DM) There are worrying signs that policymakers and political parties simply have not grasped the magnitude of the problem at hand. The current direction of SL’s economy and the overall mindset of a majority of economic and policy elites within and beyond the State, suggests a trajectory that will keep Sri Lanka dependent on foreign debt-financed trade deficits, vulnerable to shocks from energy prices, and unprepared for the next wave of transformation and economic growth. more..

සජබේ ඊළඟ නායකයා

Health sector trade unions call-off strike

Feb 14 (AD) The collective of health sector trade unions have decided to call off their ongoing strike action, the Health Trade Union Alliance said. The 72 health sector trade unions have agreed to end the trade union action, launched over disparities in allowances, after Health Minister Dr. Ramesh Pathirana had agreed for a discussion with them on Monday (Feb. 19). Accordingly, the strike is to be suspended at 6.30 a.m. tomorrow (15), the trade unions said. more..

State Minister reveals plans to establish three international universities in SL

Feb 14 (PMD) State Minister of Higher Education Dr. Suren Raghavan has announced plans to offer multiple degrees through state universities, in a bid to enhance the educational landscape in SL. Drawing from insights of int'l education experts, Dr. Raghavan explained that plans are also afoot to establish three int'l universities within SL, adding that that two of these universities are currently in the establishment phase, with the third scheduled to commence operations by May of this year. more..

In Sri Lanka, India embraces a resurgent old foe to keep China at bay

Feb 14 (SCMP) For an alliance that won just 3.84% of the vote in the 2020 general elections, it marks quite the reversal of political fortunes. But much has changed in those four years. SL has been struggling with an economic crisis since declaring bankruptcy in early 2022, with massive protests leading to the ousting of its former president in July that year. Against this backdrop, analysts view Delhi’s outreach to the JVP-led NPP more..

Video: President says he had to ‘beg’ from countries for the sake of children’s future

Feb 14 (AD) Prez Ranil Wickremesinghe says that he had to beg the other countries for help, against his will, for the sake of the children of the country and their future. Accordingly, the Head of State acknowledged that, while no one would be willing to regress to the daunting setbacks Sri Lanka experienced during the height of its economic crisis in 2022/23, it was a time where he, as the Prez, had to appeal to the world so as to provide a future for the country’s children. more..

CEB workers oppose any staff cadre reduction

Feb 14 (TM) The employees of the CEB denounced the CEB’s allegations about the prospective workforce reduction up to 18,000, claiming that the CEB should stop other unnecessary expenditures to make profits instead of reducing the number of employees. CEB Workers’ Union (CEBWU) General Secretary Ranjan Jayalal claimed that the CEB is spending millions of rupees on its contractors even when there is the ability to fulfill the particular services using CEB employees. more..