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[Last Updated = Fri, Aug 17, 2018, 11:12 am SL Time]
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New entrepreneurs to be trained in developing businesses under the 'Enterprise Sri Lanka' loan program

Aug 17 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Minister of Finance and Mass Media, Mangala Samaraweera on Thursday chaired a meeting between the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank and the Heads of Bank of Ceylon, Peoples Bank and the Regional Development Bank to expedite the "Enterprise Sri Lanka" loan program.
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LEGAL - SITUATION

Aug 17 (DN) The Finance Manager of Sri Lankan Catering Nalaka Sanjeewa said equipment was bought at a cost of Rs.56 million for a company named M.R.I.A.Kitchen which was to be set up at Wattala in 2012 but at least half of these items had not been utilized and were still in storage.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Minister of Justice and Prison Reforms, Thalatha Atukorala says that a decision has been taken to establish a new prison police unit within the Prisons Department.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- The Ministry of Education today (16) lodged a complaint with the Criminal Investigation Department requesting an inquiry into a false news report published on several websites and Facebook publications claiming that the Minister of Education had stated in Badulla that teachers' wages will be suspended during school vacations.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Officers of Police intelligence Unit has been deployed on the directions of Inspector General of Police (IGP) Pujith Jayasundara for the protection of international car racing champion Dilantha Malagamuwa and to probe the threat on his life.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- A Sri Lankan court today remanded the former navy intelligence officer who was arrested by the Criminal investigations Department (CID) on Monday in connection with the abduction and disappearance of 11 youths.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Hatton-Colombo main road is currently blocked at Watawala due to an earth slide completely halting traffic, Watawala Police said. Watawala Police say the earth slide has occurred at around 3pm this afternoon (15),
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- The Criminal Investigation Department has informed former President Mahinda Rajapaksa that they will visit his residence in order to record a statement regarding the abduction and assault of Journalist Keith Noyahr.
 

Aug 16 (DN) Kurunegala Civil Appeal High Court Judge Sumudu Premachandra yesterday imposed a 12-year term of rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs. 15,000 on a 57-year-old man who pleaded guilty to abducting and raping a schoolgirl under 14, when the case came up before court.
 

Aug 16 (Island) Director General of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC) Sarath Jayamanne, PC, has said that certain regulations could be arbitrarily adopted by lawmakers without hindrance.
 

More : LEGAL - SITUATION
* Woman arrested using fake documents to release goods at Customs (15 - AD)
* Court told suspect returned from Malaysia six months back (15 - Island)
* Ranil assures Dilantha an independent probe over death threat (15 - DM)
* Seven Entrust Securities directors indicted (15 - DN)

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

Aug 17 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's foremost apparel sector training body, Sri Lanka Institute of Textile and Apparel (SLITA) is planning to expand its services to South Asia region, Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen said.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka and Oman have signed agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation and Prevention of Fiscal Evasion between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Sultanate of Oman.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka recently entered into a partnership agreement with the Government of the United Kingdom to extend support for Sustainable Resettlement of recently released lands in the Northern and Eastern provinces of Sri Lanka.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- The High Commission of India and the Indian expatriate community in Sri Lanka celebrated the 72nd Independence Day of India on Tuesday, 15 August 2018 at India House in Colombo.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe says the unity government is working to deliver long term peace to the island nation and religious festivals are important to promote peace and reconciliation.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan Prime Minister Monday inaugurated the Greater Kurunegala Water Supply and Sewerage Project that will benefit over 70,000 people in the greater Kurunegala area.
 


FINANCE - TRAVEL

Aug 17 (DN) LAUGFS Gas has come into an exclusive arrangement with Colombo City Centre’s upcoming mall to provide LPG to all its restaurants and food outlets.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Fitch Ratings maintains a negative banking-sector outlook for Sri Lanka in 2018 as operating conditions should remain challenging, which could put mild pressure on performance during the rest of 2018 and possibly 2019.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- HNB Group has recorded Rs. 14.1 billion in Profit before Taxes (PBT) for the first six months of 2018, representing a 30.7% Year-on-Year (YoY) growth over the first half of 2017, while Group Profit after Taxes (PAT) rose 26.9% YoY to Rs. 9.6 billion.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC has continued its growth momentum into the second quarter of 2018, despite having to pay in excess of Rs 7 billion in taxes and being compelled to make significant provisions for impairment charges for the six months ending 30th June 2018.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- The Monetary Board of Sri Lanka's Central Bank has decided to extend the suspension of the business activities of the Primary Dealer Pan Asia Banking Corporation PLC (PABC) from today for another six months in order to continue the investigations, the Central Bank in a statement released said.
 

Aug 16 (Reuters) COLOMBO- The Sri Lankan rupee hit an all-time low for a second straight session on Thursday, as importers bought dollars amid fears the local currency could depreciate further tracking weakness in emerging-market currencies, dealers said.
 

Aug 16 (Reuters) COLOMBO- Sri Lankan shares ended marginally weaker on Thursday, marking their fifth straight session of losses, as foreign investors sold market heavyweight John Keells Holdings amid global worries.
 

Aug 16 (Xinhua) The Sri Lankan Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) will ink an agreement with China's e-commerce giant, Alibaba's travel arm, Fliggy, to bring down 1,000 travelers weekly to Sri Lanka for expanding the island's growing tourism sector, local media quoted Tourism Minister John Amaratunga as saying on Tuesday.
 

Aug 16 (Island) The main objective of the forum was to enhance participation of women entrepreneurs in business, especially in exports, in line with the stated policy of government to engage active participation of women in the economic development of the country
 

Aug 16 (DM) The recent new acquisitions weighed on the bottom line of the diversified conglomerate Hemas PLC during the quarter ended June 30, 2018 (1Q19), the interim financial accounts released to the Colombo Stock Exchange showed.
 

Aug 16 (DN) The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) will introduce the proposed Multi Currency Board which will enable overseas companies to list and raise capital in US dollars in three months. The CSE is currently working with the regulator to obtain necessary approvals
 

More : FINANCE - TRAVEL
* BetConstruct provides it’s Live Casino solution in Sri Lanka (15 - FGN)
* Sri Lankan rupee hits record low, Turkey woes hit emerging markets (15 - Reuters)
* Sri Lankan shares extend falls, foreign investors cut holdings in John Keells (15 - Reuters)
* US trade sanctions on Iran expected to 'gravely affect' Ceylon Tea exports (15 - Island)
* SLTDA relaunches Sri Lanka Tourism Awards (15 - DM)
* Hayleys mulls domestic aviation operations (15 - DN)

POLITICS - GENERAL

Aug 17 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Leader of the House and Public Enterprise & Kandy City Development Minister Lakshman Kiriella will represent Sri Lanka as the Special Envoy of the government at the funeral of former Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in Delhi today.
 

Aug 17 (DN) Although members of the Joint Opposition tried to display heroism in public by pledging to resign from UPFA membership and remain independent within Parliament, they are afraid to do so fearing they may lose their Parliamentary membership, Megapolis and Western Development Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka said.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lanka - Singapore Free Trade Agreement (SLSFTA) signed in January this year can be amended within a year if it has any detrimental effect on the country and the economy, a senior minister of the government said.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said he is "deeply saddened" by the death of former Indian Prime Minister AtaI Bihari Vajpayee today. Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was receiving treatment at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi, died on Thursday after a prolonged illness, at the age of 93.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka Railway Department has decided to temporarily halt the train service from Medawachchiya to Thalaimannar from Friday (August 17) for repairs on a bridge. Repair work on a main bridge between Murunkan and Mannar is scheduled to commence tomorrow.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- The British Council in Sri Lanka held its IELTS Awards Night on Tuesday, 14 August at Kings Court, Cinnamon Lakeside in Colombo. Initiated in 2010, this annual awards ceremony is hosted by the country's leading IELTS test center...
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka Railways trade unions, who launched an island wide train strike launched last week, have issued a fresh warning of trade union action if the government failed to meet their demand to resolve salary anomalies by next Tuesday.
 

Aug 16 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka will sign an agreement with Government of Oman to avoid Double Taxation and a Memorandum of Understanding on exemption from visa requirement for holders of Diplomatic and official service passports.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka has obtained a record income of US$202.5 million from cinnamon exports in 2017, according to the National Cinnamon Research and Training Center under Department of Export Agriculture. It is an increase of 30 percent compared to the previous year.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- The Sri Lankan government is considering to enter into long term contracts to purchase refined petroleum products with a view to maintaining the petroleum stocks at an optimal level.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's national carrier, SriLankan Airlines has temporarily suspended flights to and from the South Indian city of Cochin until 18th August, following the closure of Cochin Airport due to flooding in the region.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- The 2nd Integrated Consular Mobile Service (ICMS), coordinated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was held on 12 - 13 August 2018 at the Mannar Town Hall.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- A private bus association is preparing to launch a strike from midnight today (15) demanding the government to reduce the spot fines that were increased recently. The All Ceylon Private Bus Workers' Association said it would launch a strike from midnight against new fines imposed for violating road rules.
 

Aug 15 (CP) Colombo- The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) is organizing a Youth Camp bringing together youth from all 25 districts to mark the 70th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).
 

Aug 16 (News.lk) Racism and religious intolerance will not be accommodated again, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday said.PM Wickremesinghe observed that some people are unfortunately spreading racism and religious animosity without nurturing empathy and kindness.
 

Aug 16 (Island) The government said yesterday that it would soon address the issues of salary anomalies in the public sector and landlessness among the poor. The process of distributing land deeds to the poor in various districts had been accelerated,
 

Aug 16 (DN) The decision regarding the post of Opposition Leader was taken by the Speaker after extensive study and probing ideas and views of local and foreign experts and traditions followed by other democratic countries in the Commonwealth, the Speaker's office in a press release stated yesterday.
 

Aug 16 (DM) The Joint Opposition (JO) yesterday said it was ready to take legal action against UPFA Secretary and Minister Mahinda Amaraweera for giving his 'personal' opinion on the Opposition Leader's post claiming it as the party's opinion.
 

Aug 15 (Hindu) After residents and fisher folk of Puttalam district, some 140 km north of Colombo, reported sighting medical waste along their coast, Sri Lankan authorities who inspected the spot have said the items originated from India.
 

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* Will consider if JO wishes to separate – Amaraweera (15 - AD)
* Piyadasa reads riot act to JO MPs trying to be independent (15 - Island)
* The Rs.200,000 allowance - Only less than 55 MPs entitled: Ministry (15 - DM)
* Govt has stabilised economy - PM (15 - DN)

SPORTS

Aug 16 (SLC) COLOMBO- Sri Lanka Cricket wishes to announce the appointment of Vinothan John, Priyantha Udayaratne, Nalinda Ilangakoon and Gajaba Pitigala as the Managers of the ‘Four Team’s’ competing in the upcoming SLC T20 league. Accordingly, Vinothan John, who represented Sri Lanka in both ODIs and Test matches will manage the Dambulla Team.
 

Aug 16 (Sports 360) COLOMBO- It’s all about wrist spin at the moment in limited overs cricket. Finger spinners have been all but booted out of white-ball cricket with only those who bat well remaining in the picture. Having said that, just because you bowl wrist spin doesn’t mean you will succeed.
 

Aug 16 (SLC) Sri Lanka Emerging Team chased down a victory target of 224 runs winning the third and final unofficial 50-over one-day match by two wickets with seven balls to spare in a 3-nil clean sweep over South Africa Emerging Team at the Sinhalese Sports Club grounds on Tuesday.
 

Aug 16 (ESPNCI) Ajit Wadekar donned many hats over the years in Indian cricket, having served as captain, coach, and chief selector. The cricketing fraternity tweeted their tributes following his death, aged 77, in Mumbai on Wednesday.
 


WORLD

Aug 16 (BBC) Flooding caused by heavy monsoon rains in the southern Indian state of Kerala has killed at least 73 people, shut down an airport and displaced more than 85,000 people, officials have said. The state government said many of those who died were crushed under debris caused by landslides.
 

Aug 16 (BBC) Former Indian prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee has died aged 93. He was being treated for age-related illnesses in Delhi's AIIMS hospital. Vajpayee was one of the founding members of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which currently governs India. Considered a giant of Indian politics, he served as prime minister three times between 1996 and 2004 and was instrumental in making India a global nuclear power.
 

Aug 16 (BBC) More than 1,000 anti-Rohingya posts featuring calls for their murder among other hate speech were live on Facebook last week, according to Reuters. A probe by the news agency indicates that the network is still being used to encourage violence against the Muslim group in Myanmar despite the tech firm promising to tackle the issue.
 

Aug 16 (BBC) New Zealand's parliament has banned many foreigners from buying existing homes in the country - a move aimed at making properties more affordable. The ban only applies to non-residents. Australians and Singaporeans are exempt because of free-trade deals.
 


About Sri Lanka ::-
Introduction to Sri Lanka ::-

Sri Lanka is a beautiful island paradise in the Indian Ocean with white sandy beaches lush greenery, exciting adventures, amazing wildlife, cascading waterfalls and a rich heritage. The island of Sri Lanka is roughly pear-shaped. The total area of Sri Lanka is 65,610 sq km. Sri Lanka’s coastline is about 1,340 km (about 833 mi) around.

The people in Sri Lanka are warm and friendly. Sri Lankans are known for hospitality in all over the world. People in Sri Lanka ethnically fall into four main categories. The population of Sri Lanka is about 20 million. Sri Lanka has a tropical climate. Sri Lanka has a democratic government. Sri Lanka is mainly an agricultural country. Colombo is the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka gained independence in 1948. Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon.

In the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Sri Lanka became a plantation economy, famous for its production and export of cinnamon, rubber and Ceylon tea, which remains a trademark national export. By 1996 plantation crops made up only 20% of export, and further declined to 16.8% in 2005 (compared with 93% in 1970), while textiles and garments have reached 63%. The GDP grew at an average annual rate of 5.5% during the early 1990s, until a drought and a deteriorating security situation lowered growth to 3.8% in 1996. The economy rebounded in 1997-2000, with average growth of 5.3%.

Sri Lanka, with an income per head of $1,350, still lags behind some of its neighbors including Maldives and Mauritius but is ahead of its giant neighbor India. Its economy grew by an average of 5% during the 1990s during the 'War for Peace' era. According to the Sri Lankan central bank statistics, the economy was estimated to have grown by 7% last year, although inflation had reached 20%.

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