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[Last Updated = Sat, Aug 19, 2017, 08:28 am SL Time]
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Sri Lankan President establishes National Economic Council to strengthen economy

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena says he decided to establish National Economic Council (NEC) to strengthen the national economy by formalizing the economic management in the country. He said the objectives of NEC are to increase the export income and develop the local industry. He pointed out that there is a need for a stronger program for the development of the agriculture.
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LEGAL - SITUATION

Aug 19 (ECONOMYNEXT) Sri Lanka's new Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana assumed office Friday defending embattled police chief Pujith Jayasundara who was enraged after an employee failed to participate in a mandatory meditation session.
 

Aug 19 (DM) The Wild Life Conservation Department is probing the death of a seven-feet male leopard in the Deltota, Lulakanda area. Assistant Forest Range officer G R Dharmarathna told the Daily Mirror that the leopard was found dead on Monday evening following information provided by resident to the area
 

Aug 19 (Island) The first Commandant of the elite Special Task Force, retired Senior Deputy Inspector General of Police Bodhi Liyanage died yesterday after a sudden illness. Liyanage was rushed to the Kandy hospital and expired in its Intensive Care Unit.
 

Aug 19 (DN) Colombo Additional Magistrate Chandana Kalansuriya yesterday observed that Police have the power to arrest Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa over a cognisable offence, for allegedly threatening and reprimanding an official attached to the Police Financial Crimes Investigations Division (FCID) on August 15.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Supreme Court has dismissed a Fundamental Rights Petition filed against Minister Rishad Bathiudeen and Minister for Sustainable Development and Wildlife Gamini Jayawickrama Perera under Articles 17 and 126 of the Constitution for infringing the Fun
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- The convener of the Medical Students' Action Committee, Ryan Jayalath, who was wanted on several arrest warrants, surrendered to the court today through his lawyers.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka Customs officers at the Bandaranaike International (BIA) Airport this morning arrested an official of the State Intelligence at the airport for attempting to smuggle out gold jewelry worth over Rs. 9 million.
 

Aug 18 (newsin.asia) Colombo- After a gap of 47 years, Sri Lanka on Friday appointed a Tamil as the Commander of its navy.
 

More : LEGAL - SITUATION
* Rajitha: What if bomb goes off while policemen are meditating? (18 - Island)
* Lankan charged with seducing married woman (18 - DM)
* AG seeks time to commence examining Palisena (18 - DN)

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's new Foreign Affairs Minister President's Counsel Thilak Marapana said that further measures will be taken to rectify the island nation's image in the international community and Sri Lanka's overseas missions will be directed to achieve the goal.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka has expressed keenness to strengthen bilateral relations with Lebanon and also is considering establishing direct air links with the Middle Eastern nation.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena Thursday opened the photographic exhibition titled 'Heta Dakina Ranil' (Ranil who sees the future) depicting the special moments of 40 years in politics of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at the BMICH.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena as the Commander-In-Chief this morning appointed Commander Eastern Naval Area Vice Admiral Travis Sinniah as the new Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy.
 


FINANCE - TRAVEL

Aug 19 (DM) Aislaby Estate situated in Bandarawela has established an all-time record price of Rs.1150 for a BOP SP grade in the Uva High category at this week’s tea auction held on 16th August 2017.
 

Aug 19 (Island) Development Lotteries Board, renowned for launching innovative ways to satisfy customers has just introduced a new lottery ticket titled ‘’Ada Kotipathiya" (Today’s millionaire) that has revolutionized the market.
 

Aug 19 (DN) The SME sector and the mini truck dealers welcomed the move by the government to slash the Ad-valorem excise duty valuation method on motorcycles, mini trucks and single cabs. The duty on mini trucks and single cabs is expected to reducedby Rs 300,000 with effect from midnight yesterday.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Ha Noi facilitated a 20-member Vietnamese business delegation to visit Sri Lanka last week.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- A Gazette notification has been issued yesterday (August 17) by President Maithripala Sirisena bringing the National Lotteries Board and the Development Lotteries Board under the Minister of Finance and Mass Media.
 

Aug 18 (Reuters) COLOMBO- Sri Lankan shares rose on Friday on bargain-hunting following five consecutive sessions of falls and after a top official said the government would address concerns about a possible tax on trading stocks.
 

More : FINANCE - TRAVEL
* Elephant House partners Culinary Art Food Exhibition 2017 (18 - Island)
* Completion of Vallibel One’s 5-star property delayed by another year (18 - DM)
* ‘Market share of Life Insurance has not adequately increased’ (18 - DN)
* Sri Lanka Inland Revenue bill to be passed by Aug 25th, all concerns addressed: Fin Min (18 - LBO)

POLITICS - GENERAL

Aug 19 (DM) President Sirisena yesterday assured that the government would not sign any free trade agreement that would harm local industries and entrepreneurs and that he had decided to set up the National Economic Council (NEC) to strengthen the economy by streamlining its management processes.
 

Aug 19 (Island) The Joint Opposition (JO) would form an alliance of all anti-government political parties to contest forthcoming local government elections on the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) under common symbol of Flower Bud, a senior JO MP said yesterday.
 

Aug 19 (DN) No discussion was held within the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) with regard to the setting up of a special court to investigate corruption alleged to have occurred during the Rajapaksa regime, Social Empowerment, Welfare and Kandyan Heritage Minister S.B.Dissanayake said.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- State Minister of Finance and Mass Media Eran Wickramaratne assured that the proposed new income tax act does not charge any tax on money transmitted by Sri Lankan migrant workers to Sri Lanka.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe today participated in a progress review meeting on relief services for the flood-affected people in the Matara district.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- The planning seminar is taking place in Colombo for the new Norwegian Research vessel Dr Fridtjof Nansen to come to Sri Lankan waters in 2018 to carry out a survey on the marine resources, the Norwegian Embassy said in a press release.
 

Aug 18 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena Thursday laid the foundation for a waste-based electricity plant which generates electricity from garbage at the Karadiyana Waste Management Facility in Piliyandala.
 

Aug 18 (WB) World Bank Sri Lanka launched an online campaign titled #StoriesfromLKA during the month of June celebrating World Environment day "Connecting People to Nature".
 

Aug 18 (PTI) International judges cannot work in Sri Lanka to hear cases of alleged war crimes blamed on the government troops and the LTTE as the Sri Lnakan Constitution does not permit it, new Foreign Minister Thilak Marapona said today.
 

Aug 18 (Xinhua) COLOMBO- In an islandwide poll conducted for a leading business magazine in Sri Lanka, 72 percent of the respondents believe that China is key to Sri Lanka's economic progress, local media reported on Friday.
 

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* SB denies decision to appoint special court to try Rajapaksas (18 - Island)
* Ravi, Wijeyadasa and Marapana Manifestation of Govt’s moral predicament 2017-08-18 00:15:06 (18 - DM)
* Former President Chandrika salutes Premier Ranil (18 - DN)

SPORTS

Aug 19 (YC) Sunil Gavaskar expects India's dominance over Sri Lanka in the Test format to continue in the ODI series as well and predicted Virat Kohli's side to emerge victorious 4-1 in the 5-match series. Though the former Indian skipper reckons that the white ball will help the Sri Lankan batsmen find some much-needed confidence,
 

Aug 19 (Real Sport) Sri Lanka take on India in what’s tipped to be an exciting ODI series come Sunday, August 20, 2017. The Lankans have had to contend with a brutal blade of the likes of Dhawan, Pujara and, Kohli in the just-concluded Test series wherein the tourists mauled the hosts 3-nil. In what eventually became a one-sided contest as far as the 5-day game was concerned, the ODIs, it’s presumed might offer a fair chance for an even contest.
 

Aug 18 (ESPNCI) Sri Lanka, currently ranked eighth in ODIs with 88 points, can secure direct qualification for the 2019 World Cup if they win at least two matches in the upcoming five-ODI series against India, starting August 20 in Dambulla. Winning two games will push Sri Lanka's tally to 90 while West Indies, currently placed ninth with 78 points, can at best reach 88 even if they win their six remaining ODIs -
 

Aug 18 (AFP) DAMBULLA, Sri Lanka — Sri Lanka are looking to new captain Upul Tharanga for redemption in the One-Day International series starting Sunday against India after enduring a humiliating Test whitewash on home soil. Tharanga will lead the islanders into the opening match of the ODI series in Dambulla, having been appointed limited-overs captain to revive the ailing team after their shock 3-2 loss to minnows Zimbabwe.
 


WORLD

Aug 19 (BBC) The driver in Thursday's van attack that killed 13 people in a tourist area of Barcelona may still be alive and on the run, Spanish police say. They are hunting for Moroccan-born Younes Abouyaaqoub, named by Spanish media as the suspected driver.
 

Aug 19 (BBC) A 10-year-old Indian rape victim and the baby girl she gave birth to are doing fine, her doctor told the BBC. Dr Dasari Harish said her surgery was initially scheduled for Monday, but it was moved to Thursday morning after she developed high blood pressure.
 

Aug 19 (BBC) More than 16 million people have now been affected by seasonal flooding across a swathe of South Asia, say aid officials. The floods in Nepal, Bangladesh and India are thought to have killed about 500 people and are expected to worsen.
 

Aug 18 (BBC) Spanish police say they have shot dead five suspected terrorists in the town of Cambrils in a second vehicle attack, after an earlier one in Barcelona killed 13 people and injured dozens. The men were linked to the Barcelona attack, police say.
 


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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