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Lanka Labor Demand Survey 2017 identifies occupations demanded by private sector

Jul 12 (Island) On a request by the Policy Development Office of The PM’s Office, Dept of Census and Statistics (DCS) has conducted the first ever survey on the labor demand in the country in 2017. The island wide survey supported by Int'l Labor Organization (ILO) aimed to identify the demand for employment requiring different skills and formulate appropriate policies related to education and vocational training in the country. more..

Keith Noyahr assault case: Prosecution told to obtain docs from Def Secy

Jul 12 (CT) Mount Lavinia Additional Magistrate Lochana Abeywickrema, ordered the CID to obtain necessary documents connected to the Baduwatta Army Camp and the Maradana Tripoli Army Intelligence Quarters from the Defence Secretary, in connection with the case concerning the assault and abduction of Journalist Keith Noyahr. She also ordered the CID to desist from exerting pressure on lower ranked more..

Sri Lanka banks need Rs. 19 billion in fresh capital: Fitch

Jul 12 (EN) Sri Lankan banks face challenges due to slower economic growth, weak consumption and regulatory reforms which will require fresh capital of about 19 billion rupees, Fitch Ratings said. "Sri Lankan banks face challenges due to slower economic growth and pressure on disposable incomes," Fitch Ratings said in a report on Asia Frontier Bank Reforms in Sri Lanka, Mongolia and Vietnam. more..

Ex-UL Chairman’s drivers earned excessive salaries: Official

Jul 12 (FT) Three drivers working for former SriLankan Airlines Chairman Nishantha Wickramasinghe earned hundreds of thousands of rupees in overtime and other payments, with no official oversight to check if their work claims were verified, a top official told PCoI. SriLankan Airlines Company Secretary Dalrene Thirukumar provided evidence demonstrating that the three drivers who worked under more..

Fears that Sri Lanka death penalty moves will hit GSP+ access

Jul 12 (EN) Fears are rising that SL’s plans to execute drug dealers, ending a 42-year moratorium on carrying out the death penalty, may endanger the GSP+ free trade concessions with the European Union (EU), industry analysts say. EU frowns on the death penalty, which is no longer carried out in many countries, and calls itself the leading institutional actor and largest donor in the fight against death penalty worldwide. more..

Stability, Not Laws

Jul 12 (CT) Seventy one year old J.R. Jayewardene, soon after he was elected to power in July 1977, opened up the economy. As a result, a flood of Western banks set-up office here. Among those were the German based European Asian Bank, the forerunner to Deutsche Bank; Citi Bank, USA; American Express Bank, USA; Bank of America; The Netherlands based ABN Bank, the forerunner to ABN-Amro Bank; France based Bank Indosuez, Chase Manhattan Bank, USA and more..

Has Sri Lanka been beaten by Myanmar?

Jul 12 (FT) We have heard that the great Lee Kwan Yu wanted Singapore to be like Sri Lanka way back in the sixties. Today, Singapore is a $ 349 billion economy whilst we are at just a quarter of that value at around $ 85 billion. Then we consider ourselves to be better than Bangladesh. Once again, way back in 1990, SL, Bangladesh and Vietnam were at just $ 2 billion in export revenue. Today, Bangladesh is at $ 37 billion and Vietnam is at $ 213 billion whilst Sri Lanka is at just $ 11.5 billion. more..

ගස් වවමු රට හදමු

No mention of allegations, Bellana accorded safe exit from Blood Bank

Jul 12 (CT) The Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine has removed Dr Rukshan Bellana from the position of Director, National Blood Transfusion Services with effect July 10, 2018. Allegations of wrongdoing by Bellana and complicity on the part of the Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne as well as the involvement of the minister’s brother, let to trade union action that brought the institution to a standstill for the first time in its 68 year history. Secretary to the Ministry of Health more..

Most Indian, Western tourists in Sri Lanka satisfied with hotel stays

Jul 12 (EN) Most Indian and Western tourists visiting Sri Lanka are satisfied with their stays in hotels, according to the latest airport survey done by the SL Tourism Development Authority. Of the over 1,000 tourists who answered questions in the survey, 63% had stayed in hotels. Another 16% stayed in guest houses, and 8% stayed in boutique hotels. The highest number of respondents in the survey were from India, Germany, UK, Australia and Russia, aged between 20-29 and were male. more..

Herath, Karunaratne help Sri Lanka end tough day on a high

Jul 12 (CI) An unbeaten century from Dimuth Karunaratne neutralised the South African threat on the opening day of the Test series in Galle, after the visiting attack burrowed their way through Sri Lanka's middle order. Playing in his 50th Test, Karunaratne was the only Sri Lankan batsman to score more than 26 runs and featured in five partnerships of over 40 - the last stand of 63 with Lakshan Sandakan - more..

Karunaratne celebrates 50th Test in style

Jul 12 (CI) 4: The number of SL openers who have carried their bat in a Test innings. Dimuth Karunaratne joins Sidath Wettimuny (63* v New Zealand, 1983), Marvan Atapattu 216* v Zimbabwe, 1999) and Russel Arnold (104* v Zimbabwe, 1999) in this elite group. 55.05: Percentage of SL's runs scored by Karunaratne on the opening day of the Galle Test. Only seven others Sri Lankans have scored a higher percentage of runs in a completed Test innings. Asanka Gurusihna's 63.4% more..

Trilingual programme for MPs a failure: Mano

Jul 12 (NR) Minister Mano Ganesan says programmes introduced for Parliamentarians to learn all three languages have been unsuccessful. Speaking to media in Dambulla Minister said the programme was a failure as Parliamentarians failed to attend teaching sessions. Minister Ganesan stressed the public's money was used to initiate these classes in Parliament adding Tamil Parliamentarians were asked to learn Sinhala and Sinhala MPs were asked to learn Tamil. more..

Govt fleecing public through fuel price manipulation: MR

Jul 12 (DM) Former President Rajapaksa said today the govt had fleeced the public through the manipulation of fuel prices and urged it to explain to the public why the retail price of fuel was disproportionately high today. “The latest price increase is being justified in terms of a price formula which nobody has seen. It is quite clear that this govt is aiming to collect more tax revenue from fuel by increasing and reducing fuel prices more..

Opened letters & parcels in Galle under inquiry

Jul 12 (NR) Department of Posts has launched an extensive investigation into an incident of a stock of parcels and letters at the main Post Office in Galle being opened. When inquired Secretary to the Ministry of Posts and Postal Services RMDB Meegasmulla said he is awaiting a full report on the matter. The Secretary said an investigation was launched after the incident was reported. The stock of opened parcels and letters were found in the office of the supervisor at more..

Dialog powers Woman Entrepreneur of Year 2017

Jul 12 (Island) Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka’s premier connectivity provider, partners the Women’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce (WCIC) to power the 10th installation of the Women Entrepreneur of the Year. WCIC is a non-profit organisation instrumental in channelling change and providing a platform for Sri Lankan women to become successful entrepreneurs. Dialog aims to support the WCIC in identifying successful business women across multiple categories including more..

Edu. Ministry had violated the Constitution in appointing teachers: PM

Jul 12 (DM) Ministry of Education has been violating the Constitution in appointing teachers for the past 30 years, PM Ranil Wickremesinghe said today. PM came out with this statement at the launch of Subaga Scholarship scheme for school children at Temple Trees last morning. “A clause was included in the 13th Amendment that only teachers who hold a degree or a diploma should be appointed to schools run by the central govt and PCs. more..

Tussle to handle fuel pricing formula

Jul 12 (Island) Petroleum Resources Development Ministry and the Finance Ministry are on a collision course over the control of the government committee responsible for fuel pricing formula. Citing the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation Act, the Petroleum Resources Development Ministry has requested that the committee be placed under Secretary to the Ministry Upali Marasinghe. Instead, the committee has been placed under an additional secretary to the Ministry of Finance. more..

Another fake report on MR is coming: JO

Jul 12 (DM) The Govt was attempting to release another fake report like the New York Times report on former President Mahinda Rajapaksa soon, the JO alleged today. An article appeared recently on New York Times that at least US$7.6 million was dispensed from China Harbour’s account at Standard Chartered Bank to affiliates of former President Rajapaksa’s election campaign. JO member and MP Shehan Semasinghe said it was clear that the recent NY Times report more..

Thai PM arrives in Sri Lanka

Jul 12 (AD) PM of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha has arrived in Sri Lanka on a two-day official visit. The Thai PM and his group of 40 delegates including his wife arrived in Sri Lanka at 2.45 pm on a special aircraft belonging to the Thai Army. PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, Ministers Sarath Fonseka, Vajira Abeywardana, Faizer Mustapha and many others had received the group of delegates at the Bandaranaike International Airport, more..

SL Robotics Meetup discuss assistive robots

Jul 12 (DM) 5th edition of Sri Lanka Robotics Meetup was held at Virtusa recently. The event, organized by IEEE Robotics and Automation Society SL Section Chapter in partnership with IEEE Sri Lanka Section and facilitated by Virtusa discussed assistive robots. Prof. Kazuo Kiguchi, Professor in Systems and Control at the Dept of Mechanical Eng, Kyushu University, Japan started the session with a presentation on Control of Human Assist Robot Based on Integrated Information. more..

Govt burdening people while reducing fines on fraudsters: JVP

Jul 12 (DM) JVP charged that the govt had burdened the people by imposing excessive taxes and fines such as new traffic fines while reducing the fines imposed on fraudsters through National Audit Bill. JVP MP Sunil Hadunnetti said that the govt had imposed new fines and had increased fines on traffic offences so as to increase govt revenue. “The traffic rules have been strengthened not to discipline the motorists but to increase govt revenue. The govt is trying to sustain at the cost of the people. more..

Sri Lanka climbs two places in latest innovation rankings

Jul 12 (DM) Sri Lanka has made two-position improvement in the 2018 innovation rankings as the country made some limited progress in general infrastructure, ecological sustainability and knowledge and technology outputs, supporting such innovation. Global Innovation Index (GII), a collaboration between Cornell Uni, INSEAD and World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), placed SL at the 88th position, out of 126 more..

Namal in Jaffna says:TNA on Govt side

Jul 12 (CT) TNA is not focusing on the immediate issues of the North but instead concentrates on Constitutional reforms, said MP Namal Rajapaksa yesterday while addressing a press conference in Jaffna. “TNA isn’t the Opposition; they are on the Govt’s side. They are the Opposition for name- sake. When young people are asking for jobs, the TNA leader says they can’t talk about jobs and they have to talk about the Constitution. How can this be an Opposition?,” he said. more..

'Govt using graduates for political motives'

Jul 12 (NR) The JVP says the govt has no intention of providing jobs for unemployed graduates in the state sector. PM Sunil Handunetti said the govt is using the issues of the graduates to fulfil its political objectives. He said the govt must formulate a national policy in order to streamline the recruitment process. He noted in the election manifesto, the present govt promised to hand over jobs for unemployed graduates. He said accordingly vacancies were advertised and interviews more..

'No need to seek Maha Nayaka Theros’ advice to hang drug traffickers'

Jul 12 (FT) Govt ruled that there was no requirement to seek advice from top religious dignitaries such as the Maha Nayaka Theros to implement the Govt decision to reinstate the capital punishment for drug traffickers. “All religious leaders of this country are fully aware of the growing narcotic menace and organised crimes related to this trade. Prisons are safe houses for those drug traffickers, who have been convicted by courts, more..

Sri Lanka, France to promote manufacturing, infrastructure investments

Jul 12 (EN) Sri Lanka’s investment and export promotion agencies have signed a two-year deal with Business France, a French govt agency, to encourage investment in manufacturing and infrastructure. The tripartite Memorandum of Understanding between Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment, Export Development Board of SL and Business France will enhance cooperation, trade and investment. Business France helps French companies do business abroad and more..

Interim Order against National Film Corporation extended

Jul 12 (AD) Colombo District Court has extended the interim order against the decision of National Film Corporation (NFC) to take over the distribution of films, until July 25. Colombo Chief District Judge Amila Rathnayake issued this order, taking into consideration a petition filed by the four private sector companies that have so far been handling the local distribution of films. Considering the submissions by both parties, Chief District Judge ordered the National Film Corporation more..

Rs.19 mn to Pushpa Rajapaksa Foundation was a donation: CICT

Jul 12 (DM) Colombo International Container Terminals Limited (CICT) has reiterated that its payment of Rs.19,410,000/- (equivalent to US$150,000), to the Pushpa Rajapaksa Foundation was a donation, in good faith, for the construction of houses for the less privileged, CICT said in a statement. “This donation was made long after the project concession agreement for the Colombo South Terminal had been signed and more..

Save the young from this tobacco monster!

Jul 13 (DM) McDonald’s gives away a free toy with meals intended for kids. So what? No big deal, right? Do they give away a free toy with a salad? Well, no. Ever thought why? Let’s give it a try. If you check what kind of meals they do give away, they are usually burgers, fries and soda. These are the ones that bring the highest profit margin. And, they are the ones most loaded with salt and sugar; in other words, most unhealthy. Did you know that obesity with the risk of diabetes, more..

Local women in their infinite variety

Jul 13 (Island) Twenty-nine years after the brutal murder of Rajani Thiranagama, human rights activist and feminist who dared to live and work in Jaffna and criticise the LTTE after first admiring them, is the subject of T.D. Ramakrishnan’s Malayalam book Sugandhi Enna Andal Devanayaki. This chronicle of her struggle will be available in English published by HarperCollins on July 25. The Malayalam work published three years ago was reportedly sensational. more..

Cycling together in Palmyrah country

Jul 13 (ST) Vanni Yathra 2018- a cycling journey by youth from both the North and South highlighted the importance of joint ventures in protecting nature. Launched on June 4 from Kilinochchi, the journey ended in Vavuniya covering over 200 km in nine days. Team behind the effort- Eco-Friendly Volunteers (Eco-V) had previously organized seven such Yathras or journeys covering different parts of Sri Lanka. more..

The Silent Sangha

Jul 13 (GV) One of the greatest challenges facing Sri Lanka today is the failure to bring about communal reconciliation in the island. Hate has grown, gone rampant and viral. On a recent visit to Lanka I was alarmed to hear fellow Sri Lankans freely express a high level of fear and hatred towards their counterparts. I remembered the words of Brian Eno, who once said, “Feelings are more dangerous than ideas, because they aren’t susceptible to rational evaluation. more..

Rightfully returned

Jul 13 (DN) Since the end of the war in May 2009, civilian lands belonging to the people of the North that were taken away from them has been released to them gradually, although for many the process is taking too long. Currently, nine years after the end of the war, keeping in line with the govt’s policy of releasing civilians’ land, hitherto used by Jaffna Security Forces, the SL Army released a record 683 acres of land in the Thelippalei DS area to 964 legal owners during a ceremony, more..

'I will not give up my American Citizenship'

Jul 13 (CT) Former Minister Basil Rajapaksa says that the present govt is the weakest govt ever, in the history of SL. “The security of the country, territorial integrity and sovereignty of a country should be protected first and foremost. Discipline, rules and the administration have collapsed.” Q: What is Basil Rajapaksa’s role in Podujana Peramuna? A: Actually, I am only a member of Podujana Peramuna and more..

Is Gotabaya above the Law?

Jul 12 (CT) The Govt which terribly suffers from Gota-phobia levels various allegations against Gotabaya Rajapaksa. A notorious minister with a presidential dream leads this sinister campaign. Let us reply to his allegations one by one. According to him, people have lost confidence in the judicial system as Gotabaya has been placed above the law. Hence, the Govt failed to remand him at least for a single day. The reality is the exact opposite. The people’s confidence in the judiciary has more..

Edtorial: Y-palana Dutertes

Jul 13 (Island) The yahapalana leaders, during their Opposition days, used to tear into the Rajapaksa govt for using the armed forces to do police work. They also claimed that military personnel were being made to perform menial tasks such as clearing drains and canals to destroy mosquito breeding places. Three years on, they are planning to make the military perform constabulary duties. The govt has announced a plan to deploy the armed forces in drug busting operations. more..

Aluth Parlimenthuwa

Story of Galle, Maha Kappina Walawwa and the Pollocks

Jul 13 (Island) "We came to S.L. especially to watch the tests at Galle and Colombo. There is no doubt that the Galle cricket ground is one of, or these (sic) most, attractive test cricket venue in the world. The combination of a small ground, proximity to the tropical ocean, with the ramparts of a 400 year fort as a background, plus the friendly & knowledgeable local enthusiasts make watching cricket here an unforgettable experience." - David Doden, South African cricket enthusiast, S.L. July 2014 more..

Act fast to avert diabetes catastrophe: Lankan doctor issues clarion call to UN

Jul 12 (ST) An urgent call to halt the diabetes epidemic before there are catastrophic consequences goes out from Dr. Chamari Warnapura, who was accorded the singular honour of opening a United Nations interactive hearing on the prevention and control of diabetes. Dr. Warnapura, the Deputy Medical Director of the National Diabetes Centre (NDC) of the Diabetes Association of SL, spoke at the Forum on ‘Scaling up prevention and control of diabetes as more..