“Before you study the economics, study the economists!”
e-Con e-News 27 June – 03 July 2021
Hemas Holdings, and other local importers of Big Pharma, should be charged with mass murder, and not just for spreading conspiracy theories in their mafia media. They’re accused of preventing the early use of the Sinopharm vaccine here, while Hemas also insists only they can import Anglo-Swedish AstraZeneca, thereby allowing increases in infection and death (see ee Focus).
• Indian businessman Muni Kundanmal claims to have pioneered the ‘garment’ business in Sri Lanka (what about Kuveni?). In the early 1970s at a Chamber of Commerce meeting, he reprimanded a Sinhala businessman for insisting business was doing fine under Sirimavo Bandaranaike’s United Front government. Kundanmal had yelled at him, ‘I say, men, don’t say that, it will only encourage them!’
It’s almost holy scripture in capitalist media to claim the 1970-77 coalition government, which also attempted local production, was an economic failure. Its successes are also ignored. Yet when interviewed in 2009, Kundanmal acknowledged that in Sri Lanka, ‘The best time for Sindhi business was in the ‘70s and ‘80s.’ (Random Notes, Athukorala)
• The Wijeyawardene Group’s Sunday Times, famed for their dripping-over-the-top-Anglomania, links Trincomalee to English novelist Jane Austen’s brother who died in 1850. The Times makes no mention this was 2 years after their 1848 massacres here. Brother Austen died during English war on Myanmar, with a cenotaph bearing his name found in Trincomalee, the oceanic prize imperialism seeks.
Sister Austen did not write directly about the colonial game. Yet many of Austen’s relatives were involved in the bloody English wars on our countries, which continue to this day. She certainly lived through the English Empire’s expansion to indentured enslavement in Asia from the Atlantic chattel trade in Africans and the genocide in the Americas. Yet Austen restricted herself solely to the so-called ‘novel of manners’, recounting the effete airs of the English landed gentry who sucked our blood off-novel (not even like ‘off-Broadway’!). How does this link to the ongoing whingeing about attacks on University Arts education (Random Notes).
• Hartal 2.0 & Govi Superstar – Some ‘Big King’ TV channels lavish uber-pixels on promoting superstars of the Hollyweird and Bollyweird variety. Now they’re suddenly interviewing goviyo against the ban of fertilizer. Yet they never broadcast ‘Superstar Govi’. Their stipendiary columnists are now predicting Hartal 2.0.
The Wijewardene Group media have also grown sad, showing photos of people sleeping in the street. The capitalist opposition have suddenly discovered widespread impoverishment and despair. Even highlighting the JVP’s thundering denunciations, they wish to sacrifice another generation of people against the plantation machine? They hope to arouse the anarchists and nihilists, who are preponderant in our society, due to the prevention of modern industry. Only modern industry can creatively employ people, but there’s no ‘Industrial Superstar’ on TV either, let alone ordinary galaxies. The media will not discuss the addiction to quick money, and the failure of the oligarchs to invest in modern industry.
The private telecom companies are making a killing off internet education, due to Covid. The government must move to take over distribution of food, finance, and quickly enforce a wage policy, before opportunists postpone independence again.
• The Central Bank SL governor this week warned people against a clearly anti-national media, following last week’s request for banks to invest in production rather than speculate in property.
Also examine ee Finance section: A surplus of new stories are targeting rural microlender LOLC, also linked to Hemas, for artificially ‘pumping’ the stock market.
A1. Reader Comments –
• Government Denies IChem Request for Local Fertilizer Production? • ee & Commitment • Can China Help Us Set up Real Industry? • White Judges of Freedom
A2. Quotes of the Week
• US Government Promotes LTTE • Why Depend on Indian Coastguard? • CB Governor Hits Fake Media • Origins of SL Co-op Movement • SL Trade Gap $10billion • No Economic Data in SL • US Booms Global Inflation • SL Dual Exchange in 1968 • China turned to Marxism-Leninism • US Fears East African Unity • Reuters, BBC Caught Waging Media Warfare • NATO Threatens War in Black Sea • Limits of Capitalist Power • Overweighting Economics • Marxism more than Economics
A3. Random Notes –
• LOLC & US Pump StockMarket • Restrict Entry of Salesmen into Villages • Reuters, BBC & Fake News • German Doublespeak on Fertilizer Ban • Economists Must Declare Assets • Fake Professors • CB Governor Fights Back • Private Sector Far More Corrupt • Chamber & Pathfinder Wish to Rob Workers & Public Property • Eliminate Arts Education? • 100th Anniversary of China’s Communist Party • Rhetoric against China & SL • Media & Socialism • Canadian Expertise on Genocide • American Reservations & African Bantustans • Blabber on Money-Printing & Inflation – ee Asks Marx!
B. ee Focus
B1. Charge Hemas with Murder: The Ghost of Senake Bibile & Local Production
B2. The Corruption of Economists
C. News Index
A1. Reader Comments
ee thanks Readers who send articles of interest. Please excerpt or summarize what is important about any news sent, or your comments, and place any e-link at the end. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
• ‘My aunty said, for several years her college, Institute of Chemistry (IChem), has been insisting the government use our phosphate to manufacture fertilizer here. They have denied all their requests. IChem is apparently an advisor to the government with regards to chemical research and stuff.’
• ‘Many people ask whether ee is the work of one person or more… incredible commitment.’
• ‘Can China can help set up real industry? Not assembly. It’s up to our government to have a plan. If government has a proper industrial plan, then even private investors will leverage those sectors because the state has incentivized them. This is how the so-called Scandinavian model was built. The state creates the ecosystem and market roadmap, then all stakeholders have to follow that roadmap. Wallenberg use to be the Benz car importer for Sweden. Then he started Volvo, and the government helped them to gain an industrial edge. When Honda came to India it was franchised as Hero Honda, and through Japan they got better in manufacturing cheap motorcycles. Now they go as Hero. This is what government should do. We should give them a roadmap. Can’t expect them to change in days.’
• ‘Those who utter not a word about the wiping out of entire continents by the whites, curiously quote these same whites as experts and statisticians on ‘freedom’ around the world…’ (ee Focus)
A2. Quotes of the Week_
• ‘Blake and other US State Department officials met with 16 representatives of the Tamil Diaspora – from US-England-Germany – in August & October 2009 in Washington, DC.’ – see ee Sovereignty, Gamage
• ‘For how much longer is the country going to rely on calling the Indian Coast Guard for help in emergencies rather than engage in her own capacity building at home?’ – ee Economists, Sanderatne
• ‘Over the past few days, concerns have been raised by various individuals and media about an assumed shortage of foreign currency liquidity in the domestic market, preventing banks from facilitating imports. Reports published or circulated by some media channels indicate seriously negative viewpoints which can be very harmful to the country.’ – ee Economists, CBSL Governor
• ‘In Sri Lanka cooperative movements could be traced back to 1904 when the Agriculture Credit Society was started in Menikhinna. Till 1978 the co-operative societies were closely linked up with the daily life of the majority of the people. They were actively engaged in a variety of activities related to economic, social and political significance. They were involved in distribution of consumer goods, supply of essential consumer services, supply of agricultural inputs, promotion and marketing activities in the fields of agriculture, fisheries and industry, and the mobilisation and allocation of savings in the rural areas with the mutual assistance of the Co-operative Rural Bank’ (ee Agriculture, Coops).
• ‘It is in Sri Lanka’s best interest to address the longstanding merchandise trade gap of $10billion – as it places SL in a vulnerable position – through careful policy action.’ ee Economy, Fresh
• ‘There is a lack of economic data readily available in our country. This prevents proper monitoring and analysis of various actions resorted to by the government and hinders future planning… the Central Bank has filed a court case to prevent access to certain data relating to the bond scam. They retained expensive lawyers from private practice as opposed to those from the Attorney General’s Department.’ – ee Industry, Fuel Prices
• ‘The US Federal Reserve has also printed money, firing a global commodity boom’ – ee Agriculture, Baker
• ‘In May 1968, Ceylon implemented a dual exchange rate (FEECS)… with tacit acceptance of the IMF’ – Saman Kelegama
• ‘Many State-owned Business Enterprises (SOBEs) in Sri Lanka are showing sub-optimal performance in terms of its efficiency and profitability, with 83% of SOBE profits being generated by 6 entities, with 97% of losses being generated by 5 entities during 2020.’ – Chamber of Commerce
• ‘In the most critical moments of modern times, Chinese Communists turned to Marxism-Leninism. Adapting the theories to China’s actual conditions, Chinese Communists invigorated the great civilization created by the nation over 1000s of years with the power of the truths of Marxism. The Chinese civilization again shined with tremendous spiritual strength. One 100 years on, Marxism has profoundly changed China, while China has also greatly enriched Marxism. The CPC upholds the unity of emancipating the mind and seeking truth, as well as the unity of the consolidation of tradition and innovation, and has constantly opened new horizons for Marxism.’ – China Daily
• Across the Pond – ‘Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia are now alarming US political and military elites by forming an alliance and threatening to chart an independent path in the Horn of Africa.’ – ee Sovereignty, Ethiopia
• ‘Thomson Reuters Foundation and BBC Media Action are participating in a covert information warfare campaign aimed at countering Russia. Working through a shadowy department within England’s Foreign Office known as the Counter Disinformation & Media Development, the media organizations operated alongside a collection of intelligence contractors in a secret entity known simply as “The Consortium”,’ – see ee Media, Bellingcat
• Brexit? – ‘German and French approach to Russia as such is by no means ‘softening’. Both are involved in creating NATO’s footprints in the Black Sea. France is scheduled to participate in a massive Sea Breeze naval manoeuver in the Black Sea for a fortnight starting from Monday, hosted by the US and Ukraine, and involves 5,000 troops, 32 ships and 40 aircraft from dozens of countries. Again, for the first time, Germany despatched 2 Eurofighters from Tactical Air Wing 71 “Richthofen” to Romania on Thursday, which will patrol Black Sea airspace together with English forces until July 9.’ – ee Sovereignty, Bhadrakumar
• ‘The will of the capitalist is certainly to take as much as possible. What we have to do is, not to talk about his will, but to inquire about his power, the limits of that power, and the character of those limits.’ – Karl Marx
• ‘Marx and I are ourselves partly to blame for the fact that the younger people sometimes lay more stress on the economic side than is due to it. We had to emphasize the main principle vis-à-vis our adversaries, who denied it, and we had not always the time, the place or the opportunity to give their due to the other elements involved in the interaction.’ – Engels (1890)
• ‘I want no part of the kind of Marxism which infers all phenomena and all changes in the ideological superstructure of society directly and blandly from its economic basis, for things are not as simple as all that. – Lenin, in conversation with Clara Zetkin about women
A3. Random Notes (‘Seeing Number in Chaos’)_
• Sri Lanka has for too long been a casino for the merchant and moneylender import-export plantation oligarchy: There were euphemistic media allusions that the ‘success’ story LOLC has been fictitiously ‘pumping’ the stock market. LOLC is heavily involved in the rural microfinance game, putting rural people into greater debt, by selling them foreign machines and goods. LOLC is propped up by so-called development banks from Europe and the USA. The US government further moved to undermine local SL banks. Last week it was Sanasa, this week they bought shares in National Development Bank. The IMF already dominates and wants more control. Meanwhile the media continually accuses China of “taking over”,’ (see ee Finance, NDB)
• ee Readers keep insisting that the entry of various ’salespeople’ into villages, from finance companies to fertilizer and pharmaceutical reps etc, must be restricted. ee has underplayed reproducing the exorbitant flood of news items against the palm oil and fertilizer ban. It’s clear the media and their experts are mere fronts for the import mafia. Again, only the strengthening of village councils in coordination with the state can strengthen the people.
• Reuters, BBC Caught Promoting Hysteria – The English newspapers and media in Sri Lanka are funded by and produced for the white embassies and their businessmen, primarily using funds stolen from us to begin with by MNCs avoiding taxes, etc. Their aim is to flood us with their arguments, monopolizing ‘timeline, narrative control and consequences of incidents’.
Those observing the unending flood of misinformation (ignorance) and disinformation (deliberate lies) spread by the media, should check out how England is covertly funding and managing a network of Russian YouTubers and ‘activated’ anti-government protest content, exploiting the media, thinktanks and their influence network to stir up as much hysteria as possible. Who can unearth these links here?
Meanwhile, the mafia SL media claimed this week that Nordic countries – Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Iceland – are among the ‘least-corrupted’ nations in the world. If so, why are they involved in white wars on Asia and Africa? What are their troops doing in Afghanistan? Is this not the height of ‘corruption’?
• Germany’s DIMO is claiming they will move to assembly because of import restrictions. As if they’re doing us a big favor! Another news story says DIMO opposes the fertilizer ban, even as the German ambassador interjected to say they love organic.
German, Euro and US multinationals have made huge profits, parasiting off the rural home market, throwing people into debt and suicide, selling overpriced machinery, toxic fertilizers etc. Some ee readers think DIMO’s steps could be positive if the government implements a plan to ensure this does not end up like the ‘garments’.
• Economists and related professors and experts must declare their assets… so must journalists and the media. World Bank-linked Transparency International itself is opaque about its funding sources and silent about the overwhelming corruption of the private sector and our so-called professors and official intellectuals.
• If the whites (and their white-Black Sahibs) succeed in overthrowing this government, their history writers will blame the GR government for failing after one term due to its import-substitution policy, while omit mentioning Covid and the imperialist debt trap. This is what the media do with Sirimavo Banadaranaike’s 1970-77 government, refusing to mention the rise of the multinationals, the OPEC oil price rises, the food famines.
This whiting out of memory was recalled this week again in the Wijeyawardene Group’s Financial Times, in Prema-chandra Athukorala’s ‘Rethinking Sri Lanka’s Industrialisation Strategy’. Athukorala was called ‘a gung-ho neoliberal’ in 2013 in The Island, for criticizing Mahinda Rajapaksa and import-substitution policy. The Island article, since removed from their ‘morgue’ (as media archives used to be called), noted the ‘surprisingly positive yet completely unpublicised effort to promote local industry’ in that MR administration. The story added that Athukorala was not ‘very keen on either the ISI policy or Mahinda Rajapaksa’ but had to admit they had an impact. (kathnoble.wordpress.com/2013/09)
Athukorala’s articles on industrialization this week continued hitting at the 1970-77 government but went further, whitewashing the wasteful garment industry, claiming it’s no longer a fancy ‘tailor shop’.
The main scandal about our so-called industrial exports, and the garment ‘industry’ in particular is this: More than half of any revenues gained by exports goes to paying for imported inputs at inflated prices (financed by Standard Chartered Bank, etc.) 16% of our import bill is for garment inputs. (see ee Focus)
• The Central Bank Governor came out fighting, under attack from the merchant mafia, confirming once again that the media in Sri Lanka is an alien anti-national force who will sacrifice any independence for short-term financial gain, while preserving the import-export oligarchy. He stated:
‘Some segments of the Sri Lankan community motivated by political reasons have continued to fuel adverse speculation about the future path of the exchange rate and the ability of the Government to service its obligations. Such self-serving speculations are unwarranted and are harmful to the general public as well as to the business community themselves. These speculative comments have naturally created some unnecessary short-term imbalance in the foreign exchange market between inflows and outflows. However, it must be noted that the Government and the Central Bank has ensured that trade is not unduly disrupted, and intermediate and capital goods imports are given priority in the process of imports. Total import values have remained considerably high at a monthly average of US$1.7billion during March, April and May 2021. High import values in these months show that importers, particularly of essential goods, have not been overly inconvenienced as the published media reports claim.’ (ee Economists, CBSL Governor)
• The UnReported Transparency of Private-Sector Corruption: Public servants in the 1970/80s would stand up to politicians, we were nostalgically told this week. They like to forget when the UNP’s JR sent thugs to stone judges’ homes when they ruled against the assault on a female LSSP politician. They like to forget how they reduced public-service salaries and increased private-sector salaries to encourage ‘corruption’. They forget how they artificially increased recruitment of unqualified supporters and chased away dedicated workers from state institutions. Pump and dump indeed!
• Two recurrent demands by the ruling oligarchy are for privatizing public property and weakening workers’ rights. Their media use such IMF euphemisms as ‘fiscal consolidation’ and ‘labour flexibility’. This was the demand this week again by the multinational-controlled Chamber of Commerce, and Rockefeller-controlled Pathfinder etc,, also demanding ‘private procurement’ of vaccines.
The media now insult public corporations as ‘SOBEs – State-owned Business Enterprises’. The idea being that to liberals, the word ‘state’ is always a bad word. So not a day passes without us being reminded about ‘loss-making’ and ‘corrupt’ SOBEs. The latest is the millions owed by the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation to the government banks. They wish the CPC privatized even more.
Yet the private sector is far far more corrupt, with the media silent about such corruption.
There is not one media word exploring the call by patriots like GVS de Silva for villages to take over the production of electricity: “The ancillary electrical equipment industries for the production of transformers, motors, meters, insulators, circuit breakers, etc., must be established and located, wherever possible, either wholly or in part in the rural areas. Along with rural electrification, the other investment priorities are agriculture, the manufacture of agricultural implements and agro-based rural industry” Instead, Big Oil, that Wimalasurendra, almost 100 years ago, fingered, still rules!
• A lot of gnashing of media dentures continued this week about downgrading arts education while promoting science. Who divided the arts from science and science from the arts? Art and science is a product of technology! Again, it relates to the wasteful fake binaries inherited from English colonial rulers, who imposed the English landed gentry’s Oxford-Cambridge version of education on us. Not the education imparted by England’s industrial rulers, who had set off an industrial revolution that turned England from a colony of France and Holland into a world power. Our Arts departments, let alone the English Department, could interrogate the English novel and art for how it successfully threw off such continental shackles. Austen only briefly mentions some colonial matter in Mansfield Park.
• This week saw fulsome as well as grudging praise for the achievements of the Communist Party of China, at its 100th anniversary, especially after decades of blaring ‘The end of history’, that communism and Marxism is dead. Yet out of the ashes of lies arose the spectre of the great struggles of a people, acknowledging their debt to Marxism-Leninism. For those who still do not wish to credit Marx or Mao, a default position is to claim that Deng Xiaoping abandoned Marxism-Leninism. Not true. The first 30 years of New China led by Chairman Mao accomplished at great sacrifice: the basis for industrialization.
• Those whites and white-Blacks who always opposed Sri Lanka’s relations with China, opposing the Rubber-Rice Pact, trying to destroy the Bandung African-Asian Conference by playing the buruva, repeating and spreading anti-China falsehoods at every turn, blithely ignore how China has been kept under siege, just like we are, by the whites, as Asia and Africa try to build our countries with one hand while fending off their sabotage with the other…
• The media claims ‘we know’ about the crimes of socialist countries: Yet. we also ‘know’ how democratic US-occupied Japan and South Korea has 10,000s of US troops based there with the ‘red light’ districts to abuse local women and children. ‘We know’ about the rest of Asia where the whites still control their economies thru the IMF and World Bank. ‘We know’ about wholesale massacres and wars since 1949 (on Indonesia, Vietnam, etc.) And ‘we know’ just repeating what the highly controlled white media says about our countries, displays a lack of imagination and a delight in their diet of delicious crap. ‘We know’ how experts on socialism and state capitalism are manufactured. Oh yes, ‘we know’.
• ‘30 years ago, the whites pulled down statues of Marx, of Lenin, who actually never wanted monuments built for them. They wished to build a better world. Now some ‘protestors’ are pulling down the real mass murderers like Victoria and Elizabeth. But the living mass murderers Trudeau and Biden and Boris and Merkel and Macron (look at their war budgets!) are still standing and strutting on the world stage. Would it better to build statues – around the real mass murderers and on their heads – of the people murdered and the generations that could have been born, to build the real futures? Not just the Catholic Church, much of Canadian land was handed over to the Anglicans. They should use the bricks of those churches to turn them into the ‘Long Houses’ the real Americans used to live in. The world is told little about the living conditions of the original people, which are horrendous, which would put all their so-called ‘aid’ to the so-called 3rd world to shame… Meanwhile Toronto is the stock exchange to the largest mining companies in the world?’
• The Canadian state and media is broadcasting further diversion. The media will not mention it was state policy. Mass starvation policies preceded the residential policies, a process now called Victorian Holocausts. Media do not mention the use of smallpox blankets, and the forced removal, away from productive land, to reservations (with which experience they provided expertise to white settler South Africa for its Bantustans) etc. The Canadian state and their media are masters of diversion. Tomorrow they’ll be back to giving lectures on ‘human rights’ again. The English and their BBC, Reuters, CNN etc., projecting all their viciousness onto other countries like us and China and Russia. What they wish to do is ridicule all discussion of human emancipation and accountability to people.
• ‘The Real Effects of Inflation (is not the just the view from the kitchen): ‘Though what arouses immediate concern is the decline in the real incomes of the mass of wage-earners, the long-term effects of inflation on the economy are considerably more damaging. Entrepreneurial energies, investment, and production become channeled into purely financial transactions and commercial manipulations which include speculation, hoarding, and the purchase and re-purchase of existing assets (particularly urban buildings & real estate). There is, secondly, a distortion in the production structure through a greater inequality of incomes which inflation brings about.’ – SBD de Silva (ee 14 & 16 Oct 2018)
• ‘In Value, Price and Profit, Marx responds to the trade-unionist John Weston who argued that rising wages would lead to rising prices in commodities for workers. Wilson’s logic mirrors the more-recent Milton Friedman-inspired paranoia over inflation in the US due to rising wages won by unionised workers, repeated incessantly in our local media, like the US-funded EconomyNext.
Marx scientifically exposes the anti-worker basis of Weston’s claim. First, he notes that production is not fixed, but generally expanding, therefore the supply of commodities can be increased to meet the higher demand from better wages. Second, he notes that production itself is divided into different categories, workers with better wages will seek to buy commodities that make their lives more comfortable (food, clothes etc.) leading to a temporary rise in those prices. This would signal producers of luxury commodities to change what they are producing. Interestingly, Marx’s argument assumes a well-functioning market.
Notably, the US has perpetually been a war economy, producing weapons rather than the everyday goods that workers would demand. Wars create jobs and better wages for US workers, but they do not produce the commodities that workers need, except through cheaper raw materials from invaded countries. Production is also skewed towards middle and professional class demands such as automobiles and condominiums.
In contrast, wages in China have rapidly increased with minimal inflation in prices. This is because China’s productive base has produced commodities for the everyday needs and wants of the working class. John Weston’s argument is a precursor to the quantity theory of money, which argues that ‘excess money’ causes inflation. Marx is more concerned with production, and sees inflation as a problem of supply, or rather, production. See:
B. Special Focus_
B1. Charge Hemas with Murder: The Ghost of Senaka Bibile & Local Production
How Import Mafia Prevented Local Production & Delayed Vaccines – The whites have escalated their old disease and vaccine wars. Here ee attempts to lay out the evidence with a ‘timeline, narrative control and consequences’ of this latest battle. Byexamining the import mafia delaying delivery and vaccination, and a scare-mongering media that camouflages their manipulation, and blames the government and corrupt politicians instead.
One prominent weekly news columnist who portrays themselves as a feminist and fighter against government corruption, is in fact a close relative of the largest importer of medical equipment.
• True transparency would require the media divulge the multinational corporations (MNCs) hiding behind their ‘columnists’ and ‘economists’ who have been opposing even relatively mild import restrictions. Certainly, politicians who are agents of MNCs should publicly register, but also media, professors, artists, doctors, etc.
This ee examines the capitalist truth behind such headlines as ‘Switzerland donates Lanka $4mn worth Covid-19 relief package’ or ‘Standard Chartered (SC) accelerates Covid-19 vaccination efforts in SL’. And what does it mean when SC Bank ‘successfully’ finances the import of 4 million vaccine doses ‘for the State Pharmaceuticals Corporation by facilitating a trade loan to the Bank of Ceylon and People’s Bank’?
• Swiss MNC Novartis (also owning Roche) is one of the biggest profiteers off South Asia’s drug business, its local agent here Baur is involved in the fertilizer bizness as well.
• England’s Standard Chartered Bank profits off the importing, buying and selling of pharmaceutical machinery, spare parts, as well as raw materials, chemicals.
• The legal battle over the import of antigen kits between George Steuart (owner of Derana) and Maharaja (owner of MTV) offered a glimpse into the murky world of the import mafia and its media.
• Hemas, the local agent for Anglo-Swedish AstraZeneca (AZ), has been insisting they’re ‘the most competent with regard to quality and logistics’. Hemas blamed the delay in getting vaccines on the State Pharmaceutical Corporation, who ‘insisted on being the sole agent negotiating for the missing doses and at what price’.
• Ex Foreign Ministry Additional Secretary Sarala Fernando also came out to bat for Hemas. She contrasted ‘the hitherto “closed” procedure in Sri Lanka to the opening up in India’ where even states allowed to purchase and dole out vaccines to hospitals – ‘even private ones’!
Fernando concluded: ‘It is a classic contrast between the advantages of an open market system with a vibrant private sector against a closed state-centric system.’ (island.lk/is-americas-help-on-the-way)
• Meanwhile State Pharmaceutical Corporation (SPC) General Manager Dr Prasanna Gunasena exposed the private mafia spreading conspiracy theories against Chinese vaccines. The Sinopharm consignment arrived in March but was held in storage until May, after WHO approval, even as the National Medicine Regulatory Authority (NMRA) Committee approved the Indian AZ Covishield vaccine before WHO approval.
• Because proper information and statistics from our own local sources are either unavailable or hidden, we need to go back and forth between history as well as other parts of the world.
These wars are a part of larger wars waged by European and Anglo-North-American Banks to prevent our production of machinery and raw materials, and not just for making pharmaceuticals.
The global pharmaceutical industry grosses over $1trillion/year, with production dominated by multinational corporations, which increasingly concentrate research & development. The major pharmaceutical MNCs are Bayer (local agent – Hayleys), Swiss Novartis and Sanofi (– Baur), US GlaxoSmithKline, US Johnson & Johnson, US Procter & Gamble, Swiss Roche (– Hemas-Morison) and Anglo-Swedish Astra-Zeneca & US Pfizer – Hemas). Banks – US Citibank, Anglo Standard Chartered, Credit Suisse, etc. – finance the buying and selling of machinery, spare parts and raw materials for the pharmaceutical industry.
• The SL Chamber of Medical Devices Industry ‘represents the collective voice of the medical device importers’! Funny to call it an ‘industry’, no? Over 400 registered importers of medical devices in Sri Lanka raked in over $165million in 2018. The 2018 SL budget for healthcare was almost Rs200billion, with Rs10bn for purchase of medical equipment by the government sector alone.
• In June 2020, England’s CDC Group’s ‘development finance institution (DFI)’ invested in ‘developing a more efficient supply chain for pharmaceutical products across Africa’. They partnered with Novastar Ventures, ‘a venture capital fund manager’, to invest in Ghanaian medical supply chain company mPharma, to sell ‘technology and data to supply chains across Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Zambia, Zimbabwe’. Novastar is registered in Mauritius, where its offices are in the Standard Chartered Tower. Novastar is linked to French ‘aid’ (AFD) and ‘development’ bank (Proparco)! They target East & West Africa, with offices in Lagos & Nairobi.
• Hemas’ Morison Plc, which claims to be the largest oral-solid pharma manufacturer in Sri Lanka, opened an $18million pharmaceutical plant in October 2020, built with SL Institute of Nano Technology, as a public-private partnership, promising to supply 5 billion pills a year – 20% of the country’s needs.
• In February 2021, the State Pharmaceutical Corporation noted, many of the products imported by the SL Chamber of Pharmaceutical Industry (CPI), SL Chamber of Medical Devices Industry and SL Pharmaceutical Manufacturer’s Association were not registered with the NMRA. SLCPI President (& Hemas CEO) Kasturi Chellaraja Wilson blamed it on delays, whining that even for tender purposes the drugs needed to be registered. The NMRA admitted to chronic delays in registering locally manufactured and imported pharmaceuticals due to staff shortage, with the SPC offering to help clear the backlog.
• In March 2021, Hemas Hospitals signed a MOU with the Ministry of Health to commence Covid-19 PCR testing in a laboratory in Wattala, importing technology in partnership with finance company LOLC and the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology (SLINTEC).
• The G7, World Bank & World Trade Organization, which fronts for the MNCs, oppose local pharmaceutical production in our countries. The WB insists, to produce pharma, a minimum GDP is required (between $100billion & $1trillion), and population above 100 million. Yet Cuba and Jordan with small GDPs have their own viable pharma industries, as many East European countries also with small populations. Countries like Nigeria and China have also strengthened regulatory oversight, clamping down on fake drugs.
• MNCs increase profits mostly by tweaking existing medicines, and reverse-engineering already patented drugs to discover chemical composition, then patenting as their own, and by outsourcing labor-intensive manufacture.
• MNCs control production through foreign direct investment (FDI), contract manufacturing, joint ventures, strategic partnerships or licensing.
• In countries with loose regulations, MNCs brand and overprice their drugs. In strictly regulated markets, all generic drugs have the same quality.
• Pharmaceutical production has 3 steps, 1) investment, 2) manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs), involving capital-intensive investment in technology for chemicals, biochemical fermentation and synthesis, and finally 3) ‘formulation’ involving labor-intensive manufacture of pills, tablets and solutions, and then packaging, with firms producing 50 or more products in a single plant with adaptable equipment.
For example, weakly regulated pharma firms make branded generic final formulations using imported APIs. Our countries do not have significant domestic API production capacity, lacking investment, state protection, machine making, skilled workers, infrastructure, scientific knowhow, supply chains of raw materials, transport and distribution.
• Most of Bangladesh’s pharma exports are from Swiss MNC Novartis/Sandoz, which imports the APIs, and manufactures and packages final formulations locally, though a EU-certified plant.
80% of drugs sold inside Bangladesh are generics; 20%, patented drugs. These pharma companies have huge sales and distribution networks, whose pharma salesmen supply Bangladesh’s 100s of pharmacies, mostly illegal, run by doctors. Many patients obtain drugs without prescription.
After the Bangladesh Bank (BB) approved 10 companies to invest almost $53million overseas, Bangla companies, from pharma, jute mills, engineering & steel mills, invested abroad, including in Sri Lanka. A US State Department report then claimed, Bangladeshis had invested more than the legally permitted amount, with the BB stating it’s impossible to trace illegal transfers, with little profit returning to the country.
In 1974, Square Pharmaceuticals of Bangladesh entered into a third-party licensing agreement with Jansen Pharmaceuticals (subsidiary of US Johnson & Johnson). In 2000, Bangladesh’s Square Pharmaceuticals spent $50million on a new plant designed to meet English certification (received May 2007). Square hired an English firm to design the plans, and a 250-member team from Thailand built requisite facilities. England’s Standard Chartered Bank financed Bangladesh’s top pharma firm Square to set up a ‘plant’ in Kenya, with the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) also aiming to get in on the deal. Square Pharma ‘makes’ 859 products: 637 pharmaceuticals, 134 agrovets, 36 pesticides, etc., exporting to over 43 countries.
• Celebrating 100 years of the Communist Party on July 1, China has called for ‘vaccine internationalism’ vs ‘vaccine monopolism’, like internationalism resisting colonialism/imperialism last century. People all over the world are growing more critical of Big Pharma, which is clearly promoting the newest US mRNA vaccines, already profiting in $billions (not acknowledging how much of their product is based on state-funded R&D!) While their media keep claiming other older-style vaccines like AZ/Covishield & China’s are less effective or safe. Their media neglects to report, how from the start, AZ declared it would sell at cost (tho they were then accused of reneging: thehindu.com/sci-tech/science/reneging-on-the-no-profit-pledge-to-supply-oxford-vaccine/article33705151.ece) ; while China considers vaccines as ‘public goods’.
Lots of people experienced worse effects from Pfizer jabs, but this was not covered in media, until US youth started dying of heart complications recently. Meanwhile, it’s so new (and MNCs spend majority of their multibillion profits on advertising), there’s no way to even know what the possible long-term effects are. As rich nations hoard and distribute their vaccines only amongst themselves, statistics get thrown about, out of scientific context, to push a clear agenda and smear others: For, eg, they claimed China was ‘hiding’ 3rd phase-trial stats, and questioning the efficacy vs new variants – but, after successfully managing Covid to mostly zero cases, trials could only be conducted in other countries, like Brazil, Indonesia etc., which have experienced surges, overwhelming their health systems which clearly cannot be compared to those of the far richer countries! Yet preventing our countries from immunization will only backfire on them, as new variants emerge by withholding vaccination, and cases are again surging again even in richer vaccinated countries…
So what does this sudden shift mean that 5 million Pfizer doses are to arrive here July 5?
B2. The Corruption of Economists & Academic Life
‘One of the most dangerous things about the corruption of academic life in the economics discipline is that many of these people do at some point go into government or onto the boards of banks and financial companies. They don’t just write papers or give speeches. They also become active in the real world. But even when they’re only writing papers and giving speeches, their conflicts of interest are never widely discussed and aren’t widely known.’ – SBD de Silva
Prema-chandra Athukorala is a Professor of Economics at the Arndt-Corden Department of Economics at Australia’s National University. This Arndt-Corden Economics Dept, where Athukorala professes, is named after Heinz Arndt, who was SBD de Silva’s MA supervisor in the early 1950s.
One of Arndt’s interesting essays is on the semantic history of the term ‘Economic Development’. SB pointed out that such words as ‘development’ provide cover to imperialist countries because it fits in with their own industrial needs while they are actually ‘underdeveloping’ us.
Heinz had been redbaited as a communist sympathizer during the white invasion to divide Korea, his appointment being even challenged in Australia’s parliament (see internet). Still, when SB gave him a copy of The Political Economy of Underdevelopment, to review, Andt commented, ‘This is scholarly work in contradistinction to everything we now hold true..’ This shows us there’s a wide range of opinion in the so-called ‘socialist’ camp. And we can only progress by “a continuous process of experimenting, innovating, and correcting and overcoming mistakes.”
As for Athukorala, SB labeled him a rightist who blamed ‘import substitution’ and ‘welfare’ as the causes of Sri Lanka’s economic disrepair. Athukorale had misquoted Joan Robinson (as Sarath Amunugama also recently did) that we had ‘tasted the fruit before planting the tree’. As SB quipped, ‘Welfare is the penance the rich pay for refusing to develop the economy.’
Athukorala in his FT essays this week, whitewashes the whiter than white apparel industry in Sri Lanka, saying its ‘managerial and technical capability… has improved notably during the past 4 decades, with Public-Private Partnerships playing a pivotal role… Until about the mid-1990s, the domestic content of apparel exports from Sri Lanka was basically equivalent to the labour content: about 20%. At that time, the industry was treated as a glorified tailor-shop with little linkages with the rest of the economy: a symbol of dependent development.’
Athukorala however adds, ‘Since then, the 3 largest firms (MAS Holdings, Brandix, Hirdaramani, in that order) have set up plants to produce textiles (mostly knitted fabric, elastic) and ancillary inputs (hangers, brassier mounding, packaging material, labels, buttons) to be used mostly in their own apparel plants, but also to meet the requirements of other apparel producers in the country. Currently, about 60% of fabric used in apparel production (about 80% of fabrics used in knitted apparel and 20% of woven apparel) and the bulk of the ancillary inputs are produced domestically”
Now Athukorala provides no data to back up his claim. So this is the main issue for us: Who makes the machinery and the parts, the chemicals and the raw materials for these inputs? What percentage of these inputs are really made in Sri Lanka? Answer: Next to None!
(Re: Kundanmal, see hindustantimes.com/world/the-story-of-the-lankan-sindhis/story-y8boKWXJt1i9BZeXiIJDqJ.html)
More Responses to Athukorala:
• ‘Athukorala, like many of his peers blame the war and excessive expenditure on the Mahaweli and housing programs. The war itself is an externality of the liberalization project. Ronnie de Mel has said in private that without the Mahaweli and housing programs, the war and insurrections would have happened sooner and harder. Athukorala focuses on manufacturing growth slowing down 1970-76 without mentioning the OPEC crisis and global food crisis (which were genuine external shocks, unlike the civil war).
The country’s initial manufacturing capacity was developed during the closed stage, including steel, rubber and garments. Diversifying export products and export markets all happened during the so-called closed economy. Athukorala doesn’t mention that manufacturing as a percentage of GDP increased in the 2000s but to reach the closed economy levels! That’s not growth that’s recovery. SOE share in manufacturing dropped at least partially because it was privatized. Exporters like Gnanam and Abans were reduced to importers. Devaluation of the currency would have made imported inputs for manufacturing even more expensive. If we hadn’t attempted import-substitution, the losses would have been much worse!’ The video by Miniran Balakaya exposed much of what Athukorala claims: – youtube.com/watch?v=0WUrUpKBMnM
• ‘Athukorala’s arrant nonsense hides the fact that in 1955, manufacturing (and most of it tea and rubber factories) accounted for only 5% of the economy, but rose to 23% by 1977. The actual impact of liberalisation was to destroy indigenous industry. Manufacturing fell from 23% of GDP in 1977 to 14% in 1983. Critical modern sectors, eg, the burgeoning electronic and electrical manufacturing and machinery and plant sectors, collapsed. The Tea and Rubber Machinery sector, which had grown from small beginnings during the coffee era, with Clerihew’s and Brown’s inventions, and which had carved out a small but significant overseas market by being at the cutting edge of technology, disappeared within 10 years of JR’s election to office. These capital-intensive industries were replaced by the labour-intensive garment industry, which only survived and grew because of MFA quotas.
The figures for ‘Industry’ quoted here include construction, while the figures for GDP post-1977 ignore the massive ‘illegal’ economy, which DEW Gunasekera estimated in 2013 at half the economy. The garment industry, which under-invoices exports and over-invoices imports, accounts for a huge proportion of the outflow of foreign exchange.
The liberalised economy gave no incentives for manufacturing (quotas should be seen as state regulation of the market!). As a result of liberalisation, extremely powerful importer cartels prevent local industries from taking off. As a former manufacturer of motor vehicle parts, I can attest that the entire system is rigged in favour of importers. Manufacturing (and production generally) requires much longer lead times than importing and selling. Investment in stock makes much more sense than investment in plant and machinery and work in progress, especially with such high interest rates.
The development which HAS taken place, particularly in the banking sector, and penetration of market relations into the villages, did so, not because of the liberalisation of the economy, but because of the huge amount of remittances coming from workers overseas, about half of which comes through the Undiyal system, allowing outflow of black money in the opposite direction. These remittances make their way back to the villages, giving rise to new avenues for commerce and for growth of the finance sector. They have also contributed to raising wage levels. Unfortunately, the liberalised economy offers no incentive for this money to go as investment into production, only into peripheral areas such as beauty parlours, vehicles and property.
We have a large agricultural sector, highly dependent on imports of inputs, including what machinery there is. In 1955, when Ray Wijewardene developed his 2wheel tractor, he could not find the local facilities to manufacture it, so it was farmed out to the Field Master company. By 1977 Sri Lanka had started making 2wheel tractors. Today, we are back to importing them again. Meanwhile, India has become home to 2 of the 3 largest tractor manufacturers in the world: TAFE (which owns Massey Ferguson & IMT) and Mahindra (owns Jiangling). This encapsulates the utter failure of economic liberalisation, and explains why Sri Lanka needs to keep taking loans to pay for its imports. – Vinod Moonesinghe
C. News Index______________________________________________
• ee News Index provides headlines and links to gain a sense of the weekly focus of published English ‘business news’ mainly to expose the backwardness of a multinationally controlled ‘local media’:
(ee is pro-politics, pro-politician, pro-nation-state, anti-corporatist, anti-expert, anti-NGO)
ee Sovereignty news emphasizes sovereignty as economic sovereignty – a strong nation is built on modern industrialization fueled by a producer culture.
• Deafening silence of vociferous diplomatic community – Fernando
‘Sri Lanka is ‘blessed’ with a very vocal section of the diplomatic community. Those who represent this grouping work overtime on domestic issues.’
• Ambassadors, please mind your business!
• The Sri Lankan Tamil Hands within USA’s Programme for Sri Lanka – Gamage
• The Gladstone Affair: ‘A Sri Lankan Tempest’
‘“unwarranted interference in an internal matter of the country” resulted in his unceremonious send-off… as a result of his conduct during the Local Government Elections held on 10 May 1991’
• PM Modi expected in Jaffna soon?
• CARAT-21 involving Japan concluded in East, India denies it sought to conduct joint exercise with US here
• India denies making any request to use Sri Lanka’s airspace
• Sumanthiran mistakes Sri Lankan for Chinese worker
‘TNA was engaging in xenophobic propaganda and inciting hatred’
• English Core Group in consultation with UN Human Rights High Commissioner
• Erasing the Eelam Victory Part 20 C8A&B, C 9A,B, C & E
• President Rajapaksa, talks with TNA and release of Tamil Prisoners – Jeyaraj
‘you can approach me over any development related matter but not over “other” matters.’
• Sri Lanka informs EU of action to review PTA and on progress in reconciliation
• EU monitoring mission here in Sept.
‘meeting was organised by the Dutch Embassy with representatives of trade unions and other organisations in the garment sector. ‘
• Euro bells toll the knell of Lanka’s GSP+ status
• Sri Lanka helps China ward off a call to allow UN Human Rights chief access into Xinjiang
‘England, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and the United States voted for…’
• Atul Keshap to serve as Chargé d’Affaires at US Embassy in New Delhi
• US American Chamber of Commerce appoints SL’s Vrai Raymond
• The Zero-Sum Man: The President vs. the peasantry – Jayatilleka
‘The Sirimavo failure back then, as now, was rooted in a wrong macro-policy paradigm worsened by an oligarchic governance model. The policy paradigm was a closed, ‘import substitution’ economy…I applaud former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s parliamentary speech on militarisation.’
• Sri Lanka Greets China’s 100th anniversary of Communist Party
• People’s Daily Editorial: A hundred years of glory created, an eternal cause to build
• Why China Needs More Nukes
• Chinese Communist Party turns 100: China’s progress from 1921-2021 – Waduge
• Communist Party of China transforms China as a world class power – Bhadrakumar
• Full Text: Speech by Xi Jinping at a ceremony marking the centenary of the CPC
• Xi Jinping — Leading CPC to strive for a better world
• China’s Economic Advance Gives Hope to the Developing World – Ex-Nigerian President
• Biden’s Iran Policy Is Already At A Dead End
• US airstrikes in Iraq, Syria: preemptive or provocative?
‘US air attacks took place while the Iranian and the US as well as European diplomats are preparing for a potentially decisive round of talks this week in Vienna that is expected to result in a consensus to revive the JCPOA. ‘
• What Really Happened at the Winnipeg Public Meeting Labeled Antisemitic?
• Don’t Allow Another U.S.-NATO Libya in the Horn of Africa
• Western Powers Seek to Curtail Right of Self-Determination for Horn of Africa & Global South
• Ethiopians Go to the Polls Even After the US Tells Them Not to
• Leaked’ Documents: English HMS Defender Stunt Near Crimea An Intentional Provocation
‘The English government ordered the ship to take the aggressive route through territorial waters of Crimea…The ‘leak’ may thus tbe a round in a fight within the English cabinet over a more or less aggressive foreign policy.’
• Warmongering English Actions in the Black Sea
• EU shelves Russia dialogue – Bhadrakumar
‘Washington is pulling the strings to kill the Franco-German proposal. In fact, the most vociferous opposition to the proposal came from the countries of Eastern Europe that are known to be Washington’s proxies — especially Poland and the Baltic states.’
• CIA Director meets with Brazil’s cabinet
• Geo-semiotics of human rights
‘It is useless to give pretentious sermons about rights that mean little in reality’
• The Terrible Origins of July 4th
‘Because of continued resistance from leaders such as Pontiac of the Ottawa nation, King George III issued the Proclamation of 1763, which forbade settlement west of the Appalachian mountains. One of the speculators poised to become a wealthier man if settlements were permitted to move westward was George Washington.’
• Reparations Supporters Need to Unite Around Specific Demands
‘Prisoners were exempted from the post-Civil War amendment against slavery, allowing forced human bondage to continue and grow into mass Black incarceration. Slavery never ended’
• The G7 Reality Check – their actions leave little hope — or room — for changes for the better
C2. Security (the state beyond ‘a pair of handcuffs’, monopolies of legitimate violence)
ee Security section focuses on the state (a pair of handcuffs, which sposedly has the monopoly of legitimate violence), and how the ‘national security’ doctrine is undermined by private interests, with no interest in divulging or fighting the real enemy, whose chief aim is to prevent an industrial renaissance as the basis of a truly independent nation.
• India gifts machinery parts to Sri Lanka Coast Guard
• Israel Aerospace Industries to upgrade the Sri Lankan Air Force’s Kfir aircraft
• Govt. in overdrive to amend anti-terror laws, fearing loss of GSP+
• Seven SDIGs, DIG transferred with immediate effect
• Police given 2,000 trishaws to execute duties efficiently
• The prosecution, conviction and ‘emancipation’ of Duminda Silva – Jeyaraj
• Equal rights to all prisoners; demand protestors
• Cops irked by Cabinet paper on cases of bogus political victimisation
• Report on Family Law reforms presented to MOJ
• First Customs Ordinance in the world was established by a Sri Lankan King
• India successfully test-fires Agni Prime, a new missile in Agni series
‘The missile, which has a range between 1000km to 2000km, can be used to target enemy armadas in the Indo-Pacific.’
• India Not Done Enough to Secure Cybersecurity: IISS Report
• Community Control of Police is the Best Remedy
• The Thin Blue Lies Behind US Crime Wave Hype
• US Internal Security Act of 1950 & Biden’s Anti-Terrorist Laws
• US FBI Fabrication Against Assange Falls Apart
C3. Economists (Study the Economists before you study the Economics)
ee Economists shows how paid capitalist/academic ‘professionals’ confuse (misdefinitions, etc) and divert (with false indices, etc) from the steps needed to achieve an industrial country.
• Foreign Currency Liquidity in the Domestic Market –CBSL Governor
• Govt rules out plan with IMF for debt restructuring
‘Once the economy is bankrupt, they believe they can capitalize on it to get back to power.’
• Draft Central Bank Act scrapped, preventing independence of monetary authority– Colombage
• Economic management under attack – Sanderatne
‘Government statistics confirm that the Cost of Living index on food has risen by 10 percent in the 18 months this Administration has been in office. Some will contest these figures, but only that they are too conservative; prices have shot up way above 10 percent.’
• Government must pursue fiscal consolidation, reduce expenditure, eliminate corruption: Eran
• Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry’s wants Privatization & Weak Labor Laws
• Wijewardena Opposes Composting tea cultivations: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
• Nordic countries – “least-corrupted” nations in the world – Abeyratne
• No strings attached tariff eliminations key for Bangladesh-Sri Lanka FTA: IPS researchers
• Arrangement with IMF can facilitate less painful blend of financing & adjustment– Pathfinder
• Cabraal says he wished the country held more foreign exchange reserves
• IMF reserves could help rebuild emerging debt markets, UN says
‘IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva expects the fund’s board of governors to vote on proposed new SDRs by mid-August. Over $33 billion in reserves earmarked for Africa is not enough to shore up the continent’s economy, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said.’
• SDGs and country ranking: Sri Lanka improves in 2021
• English Word & World Wars
‘Greece was arm-twisted to override its parliament and elections, and hand over sovereignty to a few European bankers.’
Why Socialisation of Investment Under Capitalism Won’t Work – Patnaik
‘Mass unemployment under capitalism can never fall below a certain level without making the system dysfunctional through an acute inflationary crisis.’
• The Sentimental Criticism of Capitalism (1897) – Lenin
• Inflation, interest rates and debt – Roberts
‘sharp rises in commodity prices (agricultural products, metals and energy) driven by a slow return to production of these goods globally and also a partial breakdown in the international ‘supply chain’ of trade caused by lockdowns and restrictions on movement….it is profitability that decides investment and production, not ‘effective demand’…financial markets have been reassured by the likes of the Federal Reserve, the ECB and the Bank of England that there will be no move to hike interest rates….15-20% of companies in the major economies are barely covering the debt servicing costs with the profits they are making…profitability is the real benchmark and that can be hit by wage rises on the one hand and interest rises on the other.’
• Duncan Foley – Mathematical Formalism and Political-Economic Content
‘Mathematical Models: Rigorously Testable, Qualitative Metaphors, or Simply an Entry Barrier’
C4. Economy (Usually reported in monetary terms)
ee Economy section shows how the economy is usually measured by false indices like GDP, etc, and in monetary terms, confusing money and capital, while calling for privatization and deregulation, their constant moaning about debt and balance of payments without stating the need for industrial production to overcome such issues, etc.
• Large Sri Lankan Banks Most Exposed to Sovereign Risk: US Fitch
• World Bank again wants more foreign debt investment
• Food inflation (Y-o-Y) increased to 11.3% in June 2021 – CBSL
• External Sector Performance – April 2021
• Sri Lanka Purchasing Managers’ Index – May 2021
• CBSL holding of Govt. securities crosses Rs. 1 trillion mark for first time
• Govt. finds fresh ways to boost foreign inflows
• Fresh issue of Sri Lanka Development Bonds (SLDBs) to raise US$100 million
‘June 30 as the settlement date’
• India’s Reserve Bank currency swaps to boost Sri Lanka’s reserves; CB Governor
• SL to borrow US$150mn from ADB for COVID-19 vaccination
• Govt. keen on investments beyond 1-year via Special Deposit Accounts
• Restrictions to control foreign exchange remittances outside Sri Lanka further extended
• Sri Lanka’s foreign reserves dropping to alarming levels?
• Private Bank service charges create confusion
• Global tax overhaul backed by 130 countries
• Nivard explains why SL did not sign global tax treaty
• Sri Lanka has no need to raise rates as yet, following alternative to IMF: Minister Cabraal
• IMF keeps options open for SL to seek support
• Debt restructuring with IMF assistance mandatory to get out of this situation – SJB
• New Order issued under Foreign Exchange Act to Preserve the Foreign Exchange Position
• Dollar crisis: CB shuts door for commercial banks; importers badly hit
‘The Central Bank has told banks not to request dollars from the banking regulator’s depleted foreign currency reserves, and instead find it in the cash-short market as the country faces a major scarcity of dollars in the forex market. This has resulted in several private banks being unable to pen Letters of Credit (LCs) to importers even for essential items such as pharmaceutical products.’
• SL has little tax money left after paying state workers, economy in historic crisis: Bandula
• Private sector takes Rs. 331 b more debt; cumulative tops Rs. 6.5 trillion mark
• Nearly two-thirds of SLDBs unsold; fresh concerns raised on appetite for such bonds
• Sri Lanka bond yields close steady
• Sri Lanka rolls over US$36.24mn out of US$180mn in maturing dollar bonds
• CB prints Rs.23bn in fresh money on Friday; total holdings surpass Rs.900bn
• Sri Lanka rupee dollar parallel markets rise amid money printing, forex curbs
• May private credit up despite lockdowns
‘Sri Lanka’s private sector credit expanded by Rs.55.6 billion in May after banks disbursed Rs.57.7 billion in April.’
• Sri Lanka’s IMF SDR allocation, one hurdle passed amid Iran complication
• Tourism industry urges rescheduling of Rs. 350 b debt
• Sunshine’s Vish Govindasamy elected chairman of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce
Govindasamy is Director of Sunshine Holdings and was CEO of Watawala Plantations, making it the highest capitalised regional plantation Co. in the Colombo Stock Exchange. Duminda Hulangamuwa, Senior Partner and Head of Tax at Ernst & Young and Krishan Balendra, Chairman of John Keells appointed Vice Chairperson and Deputy Vice Chairperson. Shiromal Cooray, Chairperson Jetwing, Asoka Pieris, Cargills, Manjula de Silva, CEO Ceylon Chamber of Commerce were re-elected to Board. Sarath Ganegoda –Hayleys, Amal Cabraal – Lion Brewery and Ceylon Beverage Holdings and Bingumal Thewerathanthri, CEO, Standard Chartered Bank PLC were elected as new members.
C5. Workers (Inadequate Stats, Wasteful Transport, Unmodern Plantations, Services)
ee Workers attempts to correct the massive gaps and disinformation about workers, urban and rural and their representatives (trade unions, etc), and to highlight the need for organized worker power
• Labour Ministry in new initiative to eliminate child labour
‘Nearly 64,000 children and young people estimated engaged in hazardous work. COVID-19 doubled Sri Lankan population living under extreme poverty in 2020’
• PM urges industrialists, business community to protect workers
• GMOA complains of military interference in vaccination drive: Army refutes allegation
• Retirement age for medical officers of all grades extended to 63
• Professions supplementary to medicine also threaten trade union action from Tuesday
‘About 38,000 nurses attached to 1,103 health institutions, 16 nursing schools and 248 MOH offices took part in the union action.’
• President provides solutions to five out of seven demands of nurses
‘ Nurses fall sick: Hospital services crippled’
• Ambulance Drivers in WP on Trade Union Action today (29)
• PHIs slam Govt. for turning ’blind eye’ on Indian variant spread
• Trade Unions Complain to EU, Want GSP+…
‘women’s groups explained they were subject to harassment by the police in pursuing trade union activities. Health centres set up based on COVID-19 guidelines in FTZ factories were a farce as they had more employer representatives than workers…. “We explained that we didn’t want GSP+ to be withdrawn as it would be lead to job losses,” Mr. Athukorala said adding that he and Mr. Marcus had agreed to write to Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena on the need to ensure GSP+ concessions are not removed. This week the government said it planned to amend the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) while releasing a number of Tamil prisoners detained under the PTA, both acts meant to placate the EU.’
• Trade unions meet Foreign Minister to discuss concerns on GSP Plus
‘Free Trade Zones and General Services Employees Union, Free Trade Union Confederation, Ceylon Trade Industry and General Workers Union, United Trade Union Confederation and National Union of Seafarers Sri Lanka.’
• Bakers apply brakes on bread price hike post Govt. assurance
‘Serendib flour mill had raised wheat flour prices by 18 rupees a kilogram. Serendib had a 40% share of SL flour market and Prima, a mill owned by Singapore based firm 60% share’
– economynext.com/sri-lanka-bakers-plan-to-increase-bread-prices-by-rs10-report-83574/#modal-one– dailymirror.lk/breaking_news/Bread-prices-likely-to-increase-by-Rs-10-Bakery-Owners/108-215117
• A wedding ring pawned to buy some bread – Sunday Times
• Crazy food prices sting the poorest as relief bodies trim aid
• Demanding proper housing…
• Hunger and starvation amidst a multiplicity of economic problems
• 50% live below poverty line and many have only one meal a day. Malnutrition level up to 18%.
‘Vitarana left out of the campaign to control the Covid-19 pandemic: ‘Committee of Party Leaders be set up to interact with the Minister to make the campaign a national effort. Then Covid Committees, including health personnel, could be established down to village level without petty divisions…. The Cooperative Movement must be revived. Direct dealings between the Farmer Cooperatives and the Consumer Coops will eliminate middleman profiteering, and ensure a fair price for the farmer and the consumer. The revival of the Paddy Marketing Board and the Marketing Department to buy and sell rice and the vegetables and fruits at a reasonable price will solve the hunger problem. The stress must be on promoting ecological farming, which is organic and environmentally friendly and sustainable. But the transition from chemical fertilizer must be gradual, so that yields do not suffer. For industrial development the revival of Vidatha and SLINTEC as well as other Hi-tech institutes like SLIBTEC are essential. We must reduce borrowing and increase productivity and exports. Under no circumstances should we fall into the IMF trap. I appeal to the government to get the rich to also bear the burden. Raise personal tax from 14% to at least 70%, to enable government to get the necessary funds, avoiding debt’. – Prof. Tissa Vitarana
• Sri Lanka gives state jobs for 65,000 unemployed graduates, 35,000 less educated
• Only promises for EPZ workers awaiting jabs
• Sri Lanka’s Labour Market Amidst COVID-19: The Need for Targetted Interventions
‘a large share (92%) of agriculture workers are informal workers who earn less compared to workers in the industry and services sectors…increase in the unemployment rate is high for males (by 0.9%) than for women (by 0.6%).’
• SL export orders drop in COVID outbreak due to limited staff at factories
‘currently factories in the FTZs are working with a daily average of 70-75 percent of the total workforce…FTZ trade union leader Anton Marcus noted that at the recently held National Labour Advisory Council meeting the tripartite agreement to pay workers not called to work half their salaries or Rs.14, 500 whichever is higher was not agreed to by some of the unions…. due to the fact that going by the financial results of the companies it was found that most had made good profits and therefore it was not necessary to agree to this kind of salary reduction.’
• Plight of Sri Lanka’s estate workers in corona time
• Minimum pay relief extended for tourism sector employees
• President incorrect on loss of remittances: FT
• Man abducted by persons in ‘army uniforms’ in Norochcholai
• Chinese employees working at ‘Tissawewa’ project not People’s Liberation Army: Defense Ministry
• Proposed KDU Bill will only govern KDU: Maj. Gen. Milinda Peiris
• How do we promote multilateralism and gender equality? – Navi Pillay, et al.
• Online education an utter failure: JVP
‘Only less than 34% of children below 18 years have access to online facilities. Only 9% of university students have access to online facilities…the government has not paid any attention to resume university education by vaccinating the university community of 181,000 which includes students, academic and non-academic staff. It costs only Rs. 800 million to vaccinate the university community. But, the government was planning to import vehicles for MPS at a cost of Rs.3600 million’
• English teachers were paid about four times the GDP per capita
• Importance of mother tongue in learning
• Myopia in Arts Stream Education in State Universities in Sri Lanka
• When a group of mothers saved St. Joseph’s College
• UN experts urge Catholic Church to act against sexual abuse, provide reparations
• Screen Children ‘Nothing about us, without us’ – Ex- Bishop
• ChildFund Sri Lanka launches ‘Sri Lanka Gives Back’ fundraiser
• LEADS launches child sponsorship programme for survivors of child abuse
• ’We Are Working During Lockdown, But More Exploited ‘
‘Food delivery persons across India have been raising their voices against the continued exploitation by the corporates’
• Chinese Communist Party: a party of workers or capitalists? – Roberts
‘The CCP is not controlled by any capitalist class. The majority of CCP members are workers (manual, white collar and professional), although its ‘elite’ leaders have a nationalist not an international socialist ideology, and have connections to the capitalist sector.’
• Modern Dick Whittingtons to Vancouver
‘… going to any place possible to pick gold from the streets as fabled. No other way to cross continents and get to their dreamland except by resorting to some desperate gimmick that could hoodwink the airlines to dump them at their imaginary heaven’s gate.’
• Structural Crisis in Ontario’s Neoliberal University System
• Anti-Privatization Movements in the Global South: P3s and Women’s Human Rights
• From W.E.B. Du Bois to the Panthers: A History of Black Americans in China
• USA on Fire: The Untold History of Political Violence and Black Rebellions
• Illuminate the white supremacist roots of interethnic conflict
C6. Agriculture (Robbery of rural home market; Machines, if used, mainly imported)
ee Agriculture emphasizes the failure to industrialize on an agriculture that keeps the cultivator impoverished under moneylender and merchant, and the need to protect the rural home market. Also, importation of agricultural machinery, lack of rural monetization and commercialization, etc.
• Wimal steps up efforts to revive local coconut oil industry
• Revive Co-operatives, they help to distribute wealth in a fair way
• Don’t bulldoze tillers
• Farmers back President’s decision to ban chemical fertilizer
• Farmers will benefit from Rs 80 billion spent on chemical fertilizer imports – President
‘He guaranteed to take immediate steps to construct 105 new warehouses to store paddy, to provide financial assistance to Farmers’ Banks and to update the agricultural database expeditiously.’
• Agriculture Minister barking up the wrong tree.
• Rice fine on profiteering to be raised to boiling point but prices still high
• SL to fine traders US$500 for breaking edict maxima on rice amid money printing: report
‘75 amendments would be brought to Sri Lanka’s Consumer Affair Authority, the main price control agency to expand its powers to enforce price controls.’
• Govt to suspend import of sugar to prevent profiteering by importers: State Minister
• Farmers already brainwashed by agrochemical lobby – CEJ
‘Over 70% of the artificial fertiliser used by Sri Lankan farmers ended up in water sources’
• Sri Lanka will not reverse chemical fertilizer import ban, move to save US$400mn
• Sri Lanka wins global ‘Future Policy Award 2021’ for protection from hazardous chemicals
• India extends support to Sri Lanka’s organic agriculture push
‘Sikkim Organic Farming Development Agency CEO Dr. S. Anbalagan shared strategies employed by Sikkim towards its successful transformation as the first State in the world to adopt 100% organic agriculture in 2016.’
• Organic farming can bring numerous advantages if managed well: German Ambassador
• Germany’s DIMO opposes Fertilizer Ban
‘DIMO’s profitable agriculture business comprises of sale of agri machinery, agri machinery after services, sale of fertiliser, seeds, agrochemicals and speciality fertilisers.’
• Farmers on war path over fertiliser crisis – Sunday Times
• Fertiliser shortage and fertile ground for corruption
• Ban on the import of fertilisers: A quirky decision to destroy a viable business
‘This article is a part of a fact-and-science based advocacy campaign by Federation of Environmental Organizations (FEO),…’
• Bangladesh could show the way out of Lanka’s muddled fertilizer policy – Balachandran
• Frustrated northern fisherfolk lost at sea
‘trawlers damage sea resources & deny the livelihood of those engaged in traditional fishing’
• Sri Lanka detectives drop another bombshell in X-Press Pearl probe
‘device recording to ship-to-shore communications had malfunctioned’
• Move to get Singapore to probe destruction of marine life due to ship fire raises eyebrows
• Erosion of coastal area in Rachchikattuwa-Karukupane
• CEA to file case against damage caused around Loggalla Oya forest
• Dredging of Tissa Wewa halted amidst protests by environmentalists
• Night of high drama at Minneriya Park; vehicle chase after bid to abduct baby elephant
‘8,889–hectare Minneriya National Park, in the North Central Province is the ‘scene’ of a unique world event dubbed ‘The Gathering’. Between June & September, with the dry season setting in, more than 300 wild elephants with lots of babies gambolling around, gather to feast on the tender shoots of grass which come up on the Minneriya tank-bed, as the waters recede.’
• 25% increase in new births at Dehiwala Zoo due to Covid closure
• Colombo wetlands shrinking at a rapid rate of 1.2 percent or 57 acres per annum
• Kelani-Athurugiriya Elevated Expressway: Residents nudge foreign stakeholders to reconsider
C7. Industry (False definitions, anti-industrial sermons, rentier/entrepreneur, etc)
ee Industry notes the ignorance about industrialization (versus handicraft and manufacture), the dependence on importing foreign machinery, the need to make machines that make machines, build a producer culture. False definitions of industry, entrepreneur, etc, abound, and the need for a holistic political, economic and military strategy to overcome the domination by merchants and moneylenders.
• Capital, technology and innovation – three key ingredients for local industries – Wimal
• Rethinking Sri Lanka’s Industrialisation Strategy
• JVP Fuel Hike Protest
‘Female protestors at a JVP protest demonstration against fuel prices in Ambalantota.’
• 15% increase in fuel transportation charges from July 1: Petroleum Private Tanker Owners’ Association (SLPPTOA)
• Private tanker owners warn of derailing fuel distribution operations
‘With 800 tankers, the bulk of petrol, diesel and kerosene consignments are distributed countrywide by private operators as the CPC owns only a marginal 60 fuel carriers, Silva said. “We handle 90% of the distribution to filling stations in the country”.’
• Govt. officials to take over purchase of Litro gas
“Government bailing out LAUGFS”
• Senior CAA official in a soup over arbitrary communication with private LPG service provider
• ‘CAA has so far not given the nod for LPG and milk food price revisions’ – senior official
• The Need for Increased Fuel Prices & Divestiture Of Ceylon Petroleum Corporation
• Devananda claims he prevented increase of a litre of kerosene by Rs 35
• Over 4,000 ships docking annually, we should handle basics without turning to neighbors
• Tuk Tuks to face new regulations from NTC
• Special Purpose Vehicle imports including milk bowsers suspended
• Access Engineering gets sub-contractor deal for Kohuwala flyover
• Access Engineering begins work as sub-contractor for Gatembe flyover
‘funded by the Government of Hungary with design and supply of the superstructures entrusted to Betonútépítő Group of Hungary’
• AI will lead Sri Lanka to the Next Level of Economic Development
• New credit evaluation framework for tech companies for bank credit
‘Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) and PwC Sri Lanka introduced a new credit evaluation framework formulated with Calcey Technologies, Lankan Angel Network, NDB Investment Bank, Cemex Software and ZMessenger’
• Sri Lanka collects Rs1.4bn from anti-tower tax as rural kids climb roofs for mobile signals
• Sri Lanka Association of Software and Services Companies appoints Sandra De Zoysa
‘Sandra is the Group Chief Customer Officer at Dialog Axiata PLC’
• MTI’s UK subsidiary appoints Scotland-based Asanka de Silva to the Board
‘experience covers senior appointments with Reckitt Benckiser, Coca Cola, Charter Brands, Typhoo Tea, John West, and Edrington.’
• Due to import ban, revenue falls to Rs.30 billion! DIMO ventures into assembly of vehicles
• LAUGFS’ Largest Tyre “Made in Sri Lanka”
‘With over 3,500 employees and an annual turnover exceeding Rs. 60 billion,…’
• Sierra Cables Group records revenue of Rs. 5.2 billion
• Customs seize ghee imported under guise of lamp oil
• Colombo Uni student finds alternative to lunch sheets
• SL looks to export ‘road salt’ used for de-icing roads in developed countries during winter
‘“Lanka Salt has around 200 acres of salt plains’
• 2 more resign from World Bank vaccine committee of National Medicines Regulatory Authority
• Private vaccinators raking in millions of dollars of public funds but making a cock-up
• Switzerland donates Lanka $ 4 Mn worth COVID-19 relief package
• Norway LKR4.5 million worth medical equipment to Kalubowila and Wathupitiwala Hospitals
• Foreign Minister meets new WHO representative to Sri Lanka
• EIVHGI and COSMI President sign agreement in Vienna, Austria on March 29
‘Confederation of Micro, Small and Medium Industries…& EIVHGI (Europäischer Interessenverband Handel-Gewerbe-Industrie) is a powerful Trade – Crafts – Industries entrepreneur group represented within the Budapest based Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.’
• Preparing for ‘beyond GSP Plus’ & the EU
‘the only two paragraphs that matter are 14 and 18. While the former intends to explore the prospect of a “temporary withdrawal” of GSP+ as leverage to advance Human Rights in Sri Lanka, the latter is concerned with the “growing role and interference of China in Sri Lanka”.’
• HSBC together with IUCN launches road map to a greener apparel sector in Sri Lanka
‘Sri Lanka exports apparel worth five billion dollars and imports cotton, knitted and crocheted fabric’
• Calvin Klein Supplier Eyes Colombo Listing to Fund Africa Growth
‘Apparel maker Hela Clothing…The Sri Lanka-based manufacturer for PVH Corp. — the parent company of fashion brands Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein…Nearly 60% of the company’s revenue is generated outside Sri Lanka, and East Africa accounted for over $100 million last year…’
• China Launches 2 Units of World’s Largest Hydropower Station Ahead of CPC Centenary
C8. Finance (Making money from money, banks, lack of investment in modernity)
ee Finance tracks the effects of financialization, the curious role of ratings agencies, false indices, etc., and the rule of moneylenders.
• Hijacked National Development Bank secures $75m from US Development Finance Corp.
‘NDB Bank, the fourth largest private bank in Sri Lanka’
• Nestle scoffs at delisting rumours
• LOLC Stocks Driven by Pumping
‘LOLC Development Finance was also valued higher than Distilleries Corporation, the country’s top alcohol producer, Sri Lanka Telecom, the largest wireline operator, HNB the second largest private bank by assets.’
• Pressure on Sri Lankan Corporate Ratings from Finance Subsidiaries’ Growth
‘Abans’ balance sheet is already stretched on account of a real-estate project and any increased burden from the FS subsidiary, Abans Finance could pressure the parent’s rating.’
• CSE proposal facilitates local companies to raise foreign funds
• Sri Lanka’s China-backed Port City and CSE links up for dollarized stock exchange
• NDB tops Finance Derivatives Awards with 5 wins for Sri Lanka
• Softlogic Finance’s Growth Trajectory Backed by Shareholder Confidence
‘overall secured lending base including gold loan and leasing recording a year-on-year growth of 26%’
• The Lazarus heist: How North Korea almost pulled off a billion-dollar hack
‘one of thousands of young North Koreans who have been cultivated from childhood to become cyber-warriors – talented mathematicians as young as 12 taken from their schools and sent to the capital, where they are given intensive tuition from morning till night.’
• JPMorgan Chase Spent $59.5 Billion Buying Back Its Stock from 2017-2019
• Hedge Funds Are Getting “100 Times” Leverage on Crypto
• US Fed’s Stress Tests of Mega Banks as “Toothless”
C9. Business (Rentierism: money via imports, real-estate, tourism, insurance, fear, privatization)
ee Business aka ee Rentier focuses on diversions of the oligarchy, the domination by a merchant mafia, making money from unproductive land sales, tourism, insurance, advertising, etc. – the charade of corporate press releases disguised as ‘news’
• Happy Banana in serious financial crisis Puppet man among vendors, hit
• Business confidence remain depressed
• Sri Lanka Insurance declares highest-ever life insurance bonus of Rs. 8.6 b
• Colombo City Hotels Association demands urgent reopening of food & beverage outlets
• U.S. Ambassador to SL and Local Business Leaders Participate in First National Roundtable
‘research compiled by Chrysalis Research for the WEConnect International “Women’s Empowerment Through Economic Inclusion” pilot project, funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs: Women in Sri Lanka own approximately 253,000 or 25% of all private businesses…Roundtable participants included world leaders in gender inclusive sourcing such as IBM, Marriott International, Citi, Trane Technology, DELL and JP Morgan. Local businesses that participated in the Roundtable included Brandix Apparel Limited, Dialog Axiata PLC, DFCC bank, John Keells Holdings PLC, Hemas Holdings PLC, HNB, Jetwing Hotels and many others.
• Sri Lanka Embassy in Japan Facilitates Three Virtual Investment and Export Webinars
‘Keynote speakers included the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Japan and Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka, Chairman of BOI, Chairman Noritake-Japan Ltd, CEO of Colombo Stock Exchange, Country Director of JETRO as well as Chairman Dockyard Sri Lanka and Chairman of Expo Lanka Pvt Ltd.’
• Swadeshi Industrial Works gets enjoining order against ReeBonn Lanka, Lanka Sathosa
• Dhanusha Muthukumarana is solving the country’s productivity problem
‘clientele includes DFCC Bank, NDB Bank, AIA Insurance, Hayleys Plc, LB Finance, Hemas Holdings Plc, London Stock Exchange Group and US-based Bombardier..’
• Alienation of state properties through Selendiva Investments Limited challenged in SC
• Government decision to slash interest rates a shot in the arm for property developers
• Demand for condominiums defies COVID pandemic
‘ Completed condos have sold 92% of units. Ongoing single projects 50% & mixed developments 58%. Majority are Sri Lankan residents. Most preferred is single condominium project category and units worth below Rs. 25 m’
• Two multimillion Hotel projects get extensions to start commercial operations
• Aitken Spence Elevators local import agent for US Otis
• Three Executive Promotions Further Position WSO2 for Next Stage of Growth
‘Srinath Perera is a co-founder of the Apache Axis2 project, Malith Jayasinghe worked for multinational companies, and Radhik Colombage: Expanding WSO2’s Global Brand Awareness
• High-Rise Building Collapses: In Past 50 Years, 174 People Killed and Hundreds Injured.
• JPMorgan Chase Exits 15.7 Million Square Feet of U.S. Office Space Since 2008 But…
C10. Politics (Anti-parliament discourse, unelected constitution)
ee Politics points to the constant media diversions and the mercantile and financial forces behind the political actors, of policy taken over by private interests minus public oversight.
• Basil has pledged to US to take Wimal Weerawansa off the political map
• DEW expects those formulating new Constitution to address National List issue
• Ranawaka wants Pivithuru Hela Urumaya MP Gammanpila to join a common platform
• Superior Commander should defeat the pandemic to usher development, lessons from China
• Asoka Weeraratna, the indefatigable Buddhist Missionary – Waduge
• Defeated candidate entered Parliament as National List MP eyeing post of Opposition Leader!
• JVP Leader complains of police inaction over violent incident at Rideemaliyadda
‘protesting against broad-daylight misappropriation of public funds…Among the thugs were those who had been recently given appointments under the 100,000 jobs project….’
• Enter Basil and the strange case of familial meritocracy
• SJB abandons its constituencies: middle-class suburbs, minorities, & civil society – Devapriya
• Public servants in the 1970s and early 1980s would stand up to politicians
• Nagananda: Ranil’s re-entry inconsistent with Constitution
• Lanka issuing coin to mark Chinese Communist Party’s centenary
• Uncle Sam Mangala Worried About China & Cuba
• The “Colombo Bharathas”: A Merchant Community
‘an endowment of nature gifted the Bharathas with a homeland full of lucrative natural resources: storied pearl banks and chank (conch) fisheries’
• National Muslim Assembly launched with Prof. Kemal Deen as Chairperson
‘comprise the four key Muslim ethnic groups in Sri Lanka, namely the Sri Lankan Moors, Sri Lankan Malays, Sri Lankan Memons and the Sri Lankan Dawoodi Borahs’
C11. Media (Mis/Coverage of economics, technology, science and art)
ee Media shows how corporate media monopoly determines what is news, art, culture, etc. The media is part of the public relations (corporate propaganda) industry. The failure to highlight our priorities, the need to read between the lines. To set new perspectives and priorities.
• Hudson Samarasinghe returns as chair of Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation
• Sri Lanka: Government to investigate endemic sexual abuse in newsrooms
• Seven injured in attack on Jaffna ’Tik Tok Studio’
• Invasion of the mind through media imperialism
‘the USA argued that the New Information Order which the UNESCO and the Non-Aligned Movement were trying to bring about would undermine media freedom’
• Reign of Parakramabahu and three mounds of mystery
• Upcountry Clubs of Yesteryear — Nostalgic Histories
• Sri Lanka’s unrecognised historical connection with Kerala
• Tony Ranasinghe: Sinhala Cinema’s Most Romantic Lover – Jeyaraj
• ‘Commonwealth’ Short Story Winner Kanya d’Almeida
• In the heart of Trinco town lies the grave of Jane Austen’s brother
• ‘The’: Its standing in the English language
• ‘I Made no Compromise in any of my Films’—Adoor Gopalakrishnan
• $300 Million Every Year To Smear China From 2022 To 2026!
• China’s Global Times recently quoted Moon of Alabama
• China’s ‘Dragon Man’ Skull May be From a Denisovan or a New Human Species
• US Acting as “Rogue State” in Shutting Down Iranian News Site
• Words to intellectuals, 60 years later: Cuba & ‘Censorship’
• Reuters, BBC, and Bellingcat participated in covert UK Foreign Office-funded programs to “weaken Russia,” leaked docs reveal
• Bloomberg: Here Is How We Make The U.S. Look Great
‘The U.S. and England were claimed to be the leaders in pandemic preparedness in 2019..’
• A Remarkable Silence: Media Blackout After Key Witness Against Assange Admits Lying
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