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JVP press conference

Sri Lanka’s economy at crossroads

Dec 10 (FT) This is an edited version of the Prof. H.A. de S. Gunasekara 2018 Oration delivered at the Univ of Peradeniya on 4 Dec. Professor H A de S Gunasekara, popularly known as HAdeS, was a legend in economics in Sri Lanka. The doctoral thesis From Dependent Currency to Central Banking in Ceylon, which he submitted to the University of London, was a seminal contribution to the setting of the monetary and financial system in an economy that was transformed from feudalism to more..

Tourism’s peak period in peril

Dec 10 (CT) Sri Lanka is still struggling to come out of the adverse political situation as a result of the political tsunami which had struck the Parliament, and turned the country’s governance upside down a month ago. As the country is nearing the fourteenth year of the tsunami devastation, the late US President George H.W. Bush who visited the Island on Feb 2005, commenting on the destruction caused by the natural disaster said that SL being a country popular with tourists all efforts more..

Video: Contempt of Court petition filed against Karu

Dec 10 (AD) A lawyer has filed a petition before the Supreme Court challenging the Speaker’s decision to convene the parliament despite a pending restraining order. The petition has been put forward stating that Speaker Karu Jayasuriya has acted in Contempt of Court by reconvening the parliament when there is a pending restraining order issued on the act. Reportedly, the petition has been filed by Attorney at Law Aruna Laksiri. more..

Political turmoil halts student insurance scheme

Dec 10 (ST) Rs. 2,800 million worth Suraksha insurance scheme launched last yr to provide medical cover for Govt school students has become the latest casualty of the ongoing political turmoil. The Education Ministry launched the scheme in 2017 and offered insurance cover valid from Oct 1, 2017 to Sept 30, 2018. However as 2018 draws to an end, students have not received their insurance cards for the next year. more..

Ugly incident in parliament cannot be accepted: Thera

Dec 10 (DM) Ven. Ittepane Dhammalankara Thera, Mahanayake of the Kotte Parshwaya of the Kalyani Dharma Gree Maha Sanga Sabha told SLPP leader Mahinda Rajapaksa that Sri Lankans who are a part of a great history cannot accept the ugly incidents that took place recently within the chamber of the Parliament. He reminded the former President who visited the Thera at his Temple, Sri Dharmavijayaloka Viharaya at more..

'Eastern Province Para-military groups still possess weapons'

Dec 10 (CT) Tamil National People’s Front Batticaloa District Organizer Suresh Tharmalingam hinted that there are several para military groups which murdered and terrified the people of the Eastern Province in the ‘90s, that have not officially handed over their weapons and it is high time the Govt confiscates those weapons. The news of 35-year-old Niroshan Indika and 28-year-old Ganesh Dinesh, who were killed whilst on duty, more..

Sri Lanka forex reserves down US$ 880 million in November

Dec 10 (EN) Sri Lanka's forex reserves dropped by US$ 884.9 million in Nov 2018, to US$ 7,018.38 million amid a statutory reserve cut and more liquidity injections. In November the central bank cut the statutory reserve ratio and injected what an official said was an estimated 90 billion rupees of cash at zero interest rate in to the banking system to permanently sterilize liquidity shortages generated by earlier interventions. more..

Iraq emerges to be the No. 1 buyer of Sri Lankan Tea in 2018

Dec 10 (AD) From being second largest importer of SL Tea or renowned Ceylon Tea, the OPEC’s second-largest oil producer – Iraq that suffered a political crisis and a warfare from 2003 since American Invasion has emerged as SL’s number one tea buyer which was reflected in the Jan - Oct 2018 official tea export statistics. Iraq was number 2 to Turkey in both 2016 and 2017 but had become the top on the list in 2018 so far. more..

Sri Lanka crisis negative for economy, polls seen positive for stocks

Dec 10 (EN) SL’s political crisis is not good for economic growth but investors see early elections could be positive for the stock market, according to Tundra Fund, a Swedish based fund focussing on less well-known frontier markets. “Many were surprised that Sri Lanka, in the midst of what constitutes a constitutional crisis, was one of the winners during the month and rose almost 3%,” fund said in its latest monthly commentary. more..

First comprehensive survey of SL art organized by a U.S. museum opens in LA

Dec 10 (AD) Los Angeles County Museum of Art is presenting The Jeweled Isle: Art from Sri Lanka, the first comprehensive survey of SL art organized by a U.S. museum. Drawn in part from LACMA’s collection of SL art, and including numerous domestic and international loans, the exhibition presents some 240 works addressing nearly two millennia of SL history. In 2009, Sri Lanka emerged from a nearly 30 year-long civil war more..

Prez urged to guarantee national security

Dec 10 (Island) The govt urged President Sirisena, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of armed forces to ensure national security as the country struggled to cope up with political and constitutional crisis. Minister Bandula Gunawardena appealed to Prez on behalf of the govt. Asserting that some sections of the security sector acted contrary to presidential directives, Minister warned of dire consequences unless more..

SLPP leaders agog and on their toes

Dec 10 (CT) Party Leaders of the former President Rajapaksa faction are on their toes in anticipation of an election, irrespective of the pending decision of the Supreme Court with regard to the dissolution of Parliament. The Party Leaders met yesterday at the SLPP office in Battaramulla, to discuss their future political stance. Former MP Basil Rajapaksa also attended the discussion along with several incumbent MPs. more..

The present political imbroglio: Some random thoughts

Dec 10 (DM) The present Constitutional imbroglio has given rise to a spate of constitutional opinions being expressed by legal experts some genuine others spurious. Democracy is said to be, endangered and the Sovereignty of the people is much spoken of. One wonders what the People in the so called peripheries, i.e. in the northern and eastern parts of the country and in the rural hinterland make of this. Do these constitutional controversies have the surreal quality of more..

League of Nations, the UN and the world’s longest running conflict

Dec 10 (DM) In the aftermath First World War (1914 - 1918) in which 15 - 19 million lives were lost, the League of Nations (LN), an intergovernmental organisation wasfounded on January 10, 1920. The League’s goals included disarmament, preventing war through collective security, settling disputes among nations through negotiation and improving global welfare. The goal of the LN was to prevent wars through disarmament, collective security and negotiation. more..

I will abide by SC ruling: President

Dec 10 (DN) President Sirisena said that he will honourably accept whatever ruling given by the Supreme Court on the petitions filed against the Gazette notification issued by him to dissolve Parliament and take future political actions according to it. He said he is not happy about the administrative process vested in the President as a single individual under the Constitution as it should not be so in a country, more..

New TID Director

Dec 10 (Island) SSP W.S.E. Jayasundera has been appointed new Director of the police Terrorism Investigation Division (TID). He has been placed in charge of the Ministerial Co-ordination Division. Jayasundera was previously in charge of the Jaffna Police Division. Jayasundera succeeded DIG Nalaka de Silva, who was arrested in connection with an alleged plot to assassinate President Maithripala Sirisena and former Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. more..

Irrigation Dept. distorts history at Iranamadu

Dec 10 (ST) The plaque which acknowledged the contribution of late Prime Minister, D.S. Senanayake, and the opening of the renovated Iranamadu Tank in 1954 by then Agriculture Minister Dudley Senanayake has been completely destroyed and replaced with a plaque bearing the name of President Maithripala Sirisena. The construction of the Iranamadu tank which is regarded as the Gem of Kilinochchi, began in 1906 and was first used for irrigating fields in 1922. more..

A young UNPer should run for Prez: SLMC

Dec 10 (Island) SLMC leader Rauff Hakeem has called for fielding someone young from the UNP as a common candidate at the next presidential election. He said that there was a need for a young UNPer to run for President and leader the UNP-led alliance, at the next parliamentary election. Hakeem, however, said his party would back UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe in Parliament if a motion was presented more..

Video: Police discover 10 firearms in Beruwala

Dec 10 (AD) A 40-year-old man had been arrested with nine fire arms including a MP5K weapon used for VIP protection and a stock ammunition in Beruwala, Police said. “Suspect was arrested earlier the same day at the Lathpandura Junction in Baduraliya on possession of several ammunition,” they said. Following questioning of the suspect, Police recovered six shot guns and six rounds of ammunition, one 2.5 gun and 800 rounds of ammunition, weapon used for VIP protection more..

Video: Past govt acted without an understanding of country’s security: Gota

Dec 10 (AD) Former Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa stated that the current political situation has arisen from making 19th Amendment with a view to achieving personal political interests. He mentioned this responding to questions posed by the media personnel at the end of a certificate awarding ceremony at the Dr. Piyasena Rathuwithana Astrological Science Academy. He stated that past govt did not act with a proper understanding of the country’s security. more..

Constitutional crisis: Bandula blames it on foreign interference

Dec 10 (Island) Minister Bandula Gunawardena claimed that proving a simple majority in parliament went awry due to unprecedented international interference. He admitted that the actual situation was far more different to what was publicly stated by politicians. Gunawardena said that they faced an unexpected obstacles by way of foreign interference hence the current constitutional crisis. more..

Drunk driver causes two accidents; three dead, seven injured

Dec 10 (AD) Investigations have revealed that, the driver responsible for the two motor accidents, which killed 3 persons and injured 7 others, had been driving under influence of alcohol. At around 12.10 am today (9), a car had collided with a car arriving from the opposite direction and two other motorbikes, near a fuel station in Ratmalana. The driver of the other car and one biker had been killed in the accident and four other persons have been admitted to the Kalubowila Hospital more..

Monks, residents protest over last week’s assault on monk

Dec 10 (ST) Around 100 Buddhist monks and area residents yesterday staged a protest over last week’s assault of a resident monk at the Sudharshanaramaya in Maharagama The Ven Kottawe Hemawansa Thera was allegedly assaulted by an Urban Councillor of the area. The crowd gathered yesterday at the center of the town demanding action against the alleged suspect identified as Maharagama UC member Nishantha Wimalachandran. more..

Huge LNG contract deadline now extended after ST exposure

Dec 10 (ST) From as early as 2005, Board of Investment (BOI) had received several proposals to set up liquefied natural gas (LNG) power plants and regasification units, but there was no progress till Cabinet approved a US$ 500mn plant by China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) in May this year. There is renewed interest in the subject after the Sunday Times exposed last week that, amidst serious political turmoil, more..

HIPG attracts first drillship to Hambantota International Port

Dec 10 (FT) Hambantota International Port marked another first, coinciding with their first anniversary celebrations yesterday, when the drill ship Aban Abraham berthed at the Port. The birthday call by the ship was the first of its kind for the Port and proof of Hambantota International Port Group’s (HIPG) success in pursuing new and diverse business opportunities for the fully equipped modernised Port. HIPG saw this business as a good entry point for the Hambantota International Port to be placed more..

Dhammika Perera firms sweep CA Sri Lanka’s 54th Annual Report Awards

Dec 10 (FT) Hayleys Group and Vallibel Group, owned by renowned SL business magnate Dhammika Perera, have clinched the most number of awards at the latest annual report competition, reinforcing their commitment to and excellence in good governance. Out of the 100 awards presented at CA Sri Lanka’s 54th Annual Report Awards on 4 Dec, Hayleys Plc and Vallibel Group won a total of 18 awards, highlighting their outstanding status in good corporate governance & disclosure more..

Port of Colombo reports 28.8% increase in cruise ship arrivals

Dec 10 (Island) A remarkable growth of the cruise ships calling at the Port of Colombo has been reported this year. 45 cruise ships have called at the Port of Colombo in the past 10 months of this year which is a 28.8% increase compared to the corresponding period in 2017. This record-breaking growth is a significant achievement after declaring the years 2017, 2018 and 2019 as tourism and investment years of Sri Lanka more..

LAUGFS Power to invest Rs 3.5 bn to produce 20 MV solar power

Dec 10 (DN) LAUGFS Power Ltd a subsidiary of LAUGFS Gas PLC, will invest a further Rs. 3.5 billion until 2020 to add 20 MV of solar power to the national Grid. LAUGFS Power engaged in renewable energy solutions with mini hydro power (since 2014) and solar power generation projects currently owns and operates SL’s largest solar power project in Hambantota and plans tore-invest in two stages to add 20 MW of Solar. The first 10 MW project in Hambantota is a Joint venture more..

Navy proudly celebrates its 68th anniversary

Dec 10 (SLN) 68th anniversary of the SL Navy which boasts of an illustrious history falls today (9). A series of programmes organized to mark the anniversary celebrations of the Golden Fence around the Nation – SL Navy got underway during the past couple of weeks under the expert guidance and directives of the Commander of the Navy, Vice Admiral Sirimevan Ranasinghe. As such, a number of celebratory events were held giving prominence to religious and social welfare activities more..

Political crisis speeds up dollar outflows

Dec 10 (FT) The ongoing unprecedented political crisis has triggered a faster outflow of dollars from SL’s debt and capital markets as per the latest provisional data. Week ended 5 Dec saw a foreign outflow of Rs. 17 billion, highest in 23 months whilst the stock market witnessed a near Rs. 1 billion flight last week. The bond market saw outflows of about Rs. 51.2 billion between 25 Oct and 5 Dec whilst in the stock market more..

Some traders buying stocks in anticipation of Parliament dissolution

Dec 10 (ST) Despite the country being gripped by a constitutional face-off Colombo’s share investors propped the market up marginally for most of the week but it ended mixed on Friday amidst attractive valuations and certain traders’ hope of the court holding with the dissolution of Parliament decision, analysts said. For more than a month the market has been gripped by the impasse between President Maithripala Sirisena and his sacked PM Ranil Wickremesinghe, who refuses to step down. more..

Constructions of Diya Man bridge under President’s observation

Dec 10 (PMD) The news Diya Man bridge constructed in parellel the Gini Petti bridge of Polonnaruwa was inspected by President Sirisena today (8). This bridge situated in Wijayabhahupura in Polonnruwa belongs to the cannel which carries water to paddy cultivations from Parakarama Samudraya. As a longterm step taken under the program Pibidemu Polonnaruwa this bridge is built spending an amount of Rs.250 million and the canal provides water for paddy culivation. more..

New US Ambassador opens up to Sri Lanka

Dec 10 (FT) A career member of the US Senior Foreign Service, the US new Ambassador in SL Alaina B. Teplitz describes her job as both exciting and challenging. This is because her arrival in Sri Lanka was at a time when the country is at crossroads in terms of democracy and politics, whilst the potential to achieve stability and prosperity is also high. Speaking to the Daily FT in her first ever interview with the local media, Teplitz, more..

Danushka & Lahiru solid in warm-up game

Dec 10 (Island) Opening batsman Danushka Gunathilaka and Lahiru Thirimanne shared an 116 run stand for the first wicket as Sri Lanka reached 160 for two at stumps on day two of their 3-day warm-up game against NZ XI at McLean Park in Napier, yesterday. Gunathilaka, who made 83 off 77 balls with 12 fours and one six may have edged out Thirimanne, who made 45 in 83 ball with six boundaries, for the sole vacant opener’s slot. Regular opener and vice-captain Dimuth more..

Pan Pacific diving: Chanaka wins 3 Golds

Dec 10 (ST) Chanaka Wickremesinghe, former SL national diving team caption, won three individual gold medals at Pan Pacific Masters Games 2018 held in Gold Coast last month in masters category. The achievement of Wickremesinghe, the Asian bronze medalist, is the first time where a single Sri Lankan has won highest number of gold medal in such an event held at international level. Wickremesinghe represented Sri Lanka solo among 12 nations including Australia in 30-35 year more..