COLUMNS

Why Not An Export Industry?

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Srilal Miththapala
The Debate of export status There has been some debate, of late, on whether tourism qualifies to be an export industry. This argument has been fuelled by the age old definition of an export industry as one which ‘exports goods and services produced and purchased by residents of another country’. The problem stems from the wording ‘…purchased by residents of another country’. However, the modern day interpretations are different from the classical one.  What is the harm if such goods and services, are purchased by ...Continued

Diaspora Engagement In Sri Lanka

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Anupama Ranawana
The subject of the Sri Lankan diaspora can often be a contentious, politicised one. As the war between the LTTE and government forces came to an end, especially, there were many assumptions made about the role of the diaspora that resided in North America, the United Kingdom and Europe. As an example, there is the overwhelming assumption that much of the Sri Lankan diaspora is a ‘Tamil’ diaspora that is unanimously supportive of the LTTE. This, however, is a misconception. The Tamil diaspora is various ...Continued

Political Realism, Much Needed In IR Analyses

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Dissector
International Relations commentators would do well to take a leaf from none other than specialists in Marketing who have forged a valuable conceptual tool to analyse current developments in international economics. This is commonly referred to as ‘VUCA’, which acronym stands for, Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity. An impartial survey of ‘external sector’ developments ought to convince commentators and observers that the Marketers have got it plum right. Fast-breaking events in international politics and economics could indeed tend to be baffling. The magnitude of the ...Continued

When ‘Saint’ Adam Denied Sanga A Remarkable Milestone

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Spectator
The national cricket team taking on Cricket Australia XI, in a warm-up game, at the Bellerive Oval ahead of the Test series, brought back nostalgic memories of Kumar Sangakkara’s superb knock at this ground some 12 years ago. Sanga came up with a master class when the chips were down for Sri Lanka and ended up with 192. Known for his meticulous planning and appetite for big runs, the former captain could have gone on to complete a double hundred but was denied the milestone ...Continued

Dirty Politics Ruined Sri Lanka Cricket

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Spectator
New Sports Minister Harin Fernando has made some serious allegations; he has called the Executive Committee of Thilanga Sumathipala, which won a close cricket election in 2016, the most corrupt cricket administrative set-up in the world. Fernando subsequently asked the International Cricket Council permission to delay the cricket elections to bring the much-needed changes to the Constitution of Sri Lanka Cricket. Sumathipala was one of the key architects of the recent unsuccessful bid to wrest control of Parliament from the UNP and Fernando could be ...Continued

Bandula’s Folly

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Kshama Ranawana
UPFA Member of Parliament and former Minister of Education Bandula Gunawardena has taken umbrage over the fact that a student of an international school has been ranked first in the Arts stream amongst the candidates who sat the 2018 GCE Advanced Level examination. Talking to the media, the UPFA Parliamentarian accused the government of conspiring to privatise free education, claiming that a private candidate had been ranked for the first time in history, and that it is unfair by government and semi-governments schools. According to ...Continued

“Siege Mentality” Will Cost Sri Lanka Dearly In The Economic...

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Dissector
There is this unfortunate tendency on the part of sections of the media in Sri Lanka to sensationalize South Asia’s perceived geopolitical tensions. They are prone to even counting the number of big power war ships that visit Sri Lankan ports. According to one source, the number of such vessels visiting Sri Lanka since 2008 is 450 and rising. The question to be posed is whether such media fixations have a depressing impact on the morale of the public and on that of the political ...Continued

A Look Back On 2018

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Srilal Miththapala
Arrivals Sri Lanka has been recording a steady YoY growth in arrivals in the post-war period; 2017 saw 2.1 m arrivals, with a CAGR of close upon 19% over the past five years. Total arrivals for 2018 reached 2.33 m arrivals, with a marginal 10.3% increase over 2017, missing the target of 2.5m arrivals set by the government.  In the absence of any strong and cohesive marketing campaign, which the private sector has been clamouring for over two years now, the YoY growth percentage has ...Continued

Old Fox Rolling Over In His Grave

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Vishvanath
How would the late President J. R. Jayewardene feel if he knew his party’s frantic efforts to do away with the executive presidency he created and was so enamoured of? He would feel the same way as he did way back in the early 1970s, when his proposal for a powerful executive presidency met with stiff resistance from his own party, the UNP, which he bent to his will a couple of years later after taking over its leadership. He contemptuously rejected the idea of ...Continued

Rumble At Sri Lanka Cricket

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Spectator
As in politics, there aren’t permanent enemies or permanent friends in cricket. Friends who come together to topple an incumbent administration, end up fighting one another within a matter of months, as we have seen over the years. When the last cricket election was held in 2016, the unthinkable happened. We witnessed  a coming together of sworn enemies, Jayantha Dharmadasa and Thilanga Sumathipal, to demolish Nishantha Ranatunga’s empire. Thanks to the backing of Mahinda Rajapaksa’s sons, the younger Ranatunga was running the game of cricket ...Continued

Overcoming The Challenges Of Organic Farming

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Dr. Prasanna Cooray
Health complications of foods contaminated with agrochemicals are now well known. The long list of such complications include the conditions as immediate as allergies and gastro-intestinal disorders and long term consequences like asthma, cancers, Parkinson’s disease and kidney disease. At a time when the entire country is grappling with the need to produce food without chemical inputs, a farm named “Mihimandala” in Welikandagama, in the Badulla district, has come out with the practical solutions. Managing Director V. M. B. Athula Priyantha, BSc Agriculture (Special), MSc ...Continued

Nationalistic Sentiments Hinder Vibrant Economic Integration

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Dissector
Sri Lanka is badly at risk of being out of step with a briskly economically-integrating South Asia. What is required is not simply an open economy in the ‘island nation’ but one that is steadily integrating itself with not only the economies of this region but also with those outside it. Just being ‘open’ would not suffice. What is of crucial importance is integration and this process is at a farther qualitative remove from mere ‘openness’. Why is all this important now, some 30 years ...Continued
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