“Before you study the economics, study the economists!”
e-Con e-News 08-14 August 2021
This is ee ‘s 176th issue – dedicated, as always, to the modern industrialization of Sri Lanka. Independence demands that all the ‘treasure of the realm’ be invested in modern machine-making production, raising rural and urban workers skills.
• A Sri Lankan worker in Japan was murdered like a dog, says her family. By the Japanese state on behalf of the Keidanren, to prevent an anti-migrant law from being passed? Thus, ee wonders. Newspaper reports (see ee Workers) are superficial. Some media who treasure their invitations to embassy parties, to hobnob with whites, say the worker herself was responsible for overstaying her visa. So what’s the real story?
How does all this link to the pressure for Sri Lanka to import more Japanese cars and machines?
83% of Japan’s firms need more workers. More influential than Japan’s mafia – the Yakuza! – the Keidanren, Japan’s most powerful industrial lobby, demand more migrants. An internship program in 1993 promised: ‘people from developing countries the opportunity to learn skills they could take back home. There were 274,000 interns by 2018, but the US government exposed the program as “a guestworker program”.’ Many interns are ‘placed in jobs that do not teach or develop technical skills’; ‘some… experience conditions of forced labor’. The USA, of course is the world’s experts on forced labor. (see ee Focus)
• Sri Lanka’s migrant workers remitted Rs660billion ($3.3bn) to the economy in the first half of 2021. English-owned Cigarette-seller Ceylon Tobacco Co gained revenues of Rs30bn in the 2nd quarter ending in June. Drug importer Hemas gained revenues of Rs16.4bn in 2nd quarter. We’re not told how much workers inside Sri Lanka remitted to the economy. Media does not report this stat, also known as ‘National Income’? (see ee Business)
• Sex & Worker Trafficking in Geneva: JCL de Sismondi is one of ee’s favouritest economists. So what does he have to do with the English invasion of Kandy in 1815? Imagine our surprise, to find out there’s a street named after him in Geneva, and guess what they sell there?
Rue Sismondi, ‘in the heart of the Pâquis district of Geneva, is known for prostitution, drugs and gang violence’. It has many migrant and refugee populations, and proclaimed as Geneva’s ‘global village’. Yes, just south of the ‘historic’ UN Human Rights headquarters, which is set to pass sanctions on Sri Lanka.
So who is Sismondi, and why does ee even mention him? One reason is, our artists and politicians are caught in his grip, and refuse to name who really controls the economy – their own corporate and media sponsors run by Unilever! Why Maharaja’s MTV has no Remittance Superstar! (Random Notes)
• Banks are announcing massive profits but refusing to invest in real industry. Real industry is not SMEs or ‘assembly’ or ‘manufacture’. White countries opposed to our economic independence, are steadily taking over local banks, openly this time: The US ambassador is also promoting small and media ‘enterprises’: Is Small Really Beautfiul? (ee Finance)
• The headline ‘IMF or no IMF, SL Needs Economic Analysis & Plan going forward’, quotes Verité Research, an imperialist-funded thinktank. But it’s the IMF and World Bank that prevented planning, calling it a communist plot! Only multinationals are allowed to plan! Our real interest is a plan to invest in modern machine industry. (ee Economists)
• This week saw the 68th anniversary of the 12 August 1953 Hartal against World-Bank-imposed price hikes. The Hartal initiated by Left parties saw the UNP cabinet flee to an English warship in Colombo Harbor. Now some are calling for a Hartal 2.0, to promote an imperialist agenda against the government, wanting to use workers as human shields at this hour of Covid. Others recall the Hartal led to the 1956.
• The US war drumming against China relates to the ‘Made-in-China-2025’ program. This program will enable China to make the most-tech-intensive machines – machines that make semiconductor machines, and reduce China’s dependence on labor-intensive production. Our media apparently know little about such matters and promote our ‘coolie’ status in the supply chains.
Thus ee reproduces Rathindra Kuruwita’s Industrial Party in China: ‘the purpose of this essay, apart from introducing The Industrial Party to a Sri Lankan audience [is] an attempt to talk about the new political and economic thought that has been animating China in the last 20 years, but hidden from most people who don’t have English-speaking friends who live in China, I also want to highlight the need to use social media, as a tool to gauge public responses to government policies and to identify bloggers and theorists in social media that could actually have ideas to take Sri Lanka out of the rut it is in. For over 4 decades, we have been financializing the economy, reducing people to numbers, and losing any industrial advantage that initial SL leaders tried hard to enable. Perhaps it is better if we too encourage those in our elite universities to present their theories on the way forward.’ (see ee Focus)
• The Covid offensive is the latest strategy in a capitalist war. The state has to balance keeping a colonial economy on keel, while protecting people. The government – if it does not wish to fully deliver us back into the hands of imperialists – must take control of production and distribution. Taking control of production requires taking control of the banks and directing their investment, otherwise the banks and their media will continue to undermine them. (Random Notes, 1st Act of the Russian Revolution).
• Speaker Karu’s Wool Wig! The news in imperialist countries always, always, always, closely interweave their national and international interests. ee likes to recall, the English King ordered the Parliamentary Speaker to sit on a woolsack, and judges to wear wool on their heads to always remember the ‘treasure of the realm’ lay in rearing sheep (and chasing people off the land to do so) making woollen cloth, not in exporting it. (Random Notes, Sumptuary Laws)
• ee got stern criticism about its last issue on Machines Making Machines, Marx & Stalin Why even mention machine-building, when we barely make a tool? (Reader Comments)
• Was the US ‘Quad’ behind the April 2019 attacks? Is this why we cannot name them? Notice the flurry of India-sourced news stories, muddying the waters, even linking the LTTE to Pakistan (see ee Sovereignty)
A1. Reader Comments –
• Who Burnt Jaffna Library? • Health Department Traitors • Singapore & Money Laundering • Kolombots vs Import Bans but Pro-Lockdown • Why Quote Marx on Greeks? • ee Ignores Asia’s Industrial History • Why Not Assembly? • Send Workers to China to Learn Modern Industry • Learn from USSR – Control the Banks First!
A2. Quotes of the Week
• West’s Anti-Vax Propaganda Killing Us • White War Games in Asia • West Equals ‘International’ • Yahapalana Made Economy Worse • Agricultural Professors Doing Nothing • Fisheries & Economy • Gas for Pope Only, Not SriL • More White Troops to Afghanistan
A3. Random Notes –
• Elephants, Perahera & Cruelty • Anti-Sinhala Buddhism the new Evangelical religion • Excise Excises Important Data • Sismondi & Kandy & Romantics • Train ourselves to Read the News • Media Games on the Economy • Laws to Control Fashion • How to Control Banks • Cuba & SMEs
B. ee Focus
• B1. The 1953 Hartal Leads to 1956
• B2. Murder of a Sri Lankan Worker & Japan’s Industrial Olympics
• B3. Origins of the Buddha & the Sangha
• B4. The Communist Party of China & The Industrial Party
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
• ‘Re: Edward Gunawardena’s Who Burnt the Jaffna Library gives a different twist: India was behind it to destabilize Sri Lanka. We were always made to believe Gamini Dissanayake did it – but wondered why Dissanayake, who lived next to the British Council Library, went all the way to Jaffna to burn a library? It now appears there were other forces involved. – island.lk/who-burnt-the-jaffna-library
• ‘Recently one of my facebook friends went to Jaffna from Paris. He took his friend for the vaccine. He noticed some local Health Department officers spreading these anti-Sinopharm panic stories. Really, these people are traitors and should be punished.’
• ‘ee keeps harping on Singapore’s industrialization, as a route we failed to take. But Singapore is different to us in that it relied on capital from money laundering to do so. Also, its big brother Malaysia did not want to stop it developing – being more sensible than India. Malaysia too benefited from Singapore’s gains. India lost by preventing Sri Lanka’s growth (and by preventing ALL its neighbours from developing). This was not India’s doing as such but that of its secret services, which is controlled from abroad (by arms trade, via Western government’s secret services?) and not by the Indian government.’
[ee responds: It is what we do with the laundered money. Singapore invested it in modern industrialization.)
• ‘Colombots are against import bans, call it authoritarianism. Though the bans help the domestic and rural economy. But they are pro-lockdowns. Which will hurt the rural and domestic economy. Basically what they want is authoritarianism for poor and liberalism for rich. Lockdowns are not only about daily wage-earners, as most liberals seem to assume. Lockdowns will have serious output drop and cause long-run inflation, already higher. Also we’re entering Maha Kannaya. Most of these libs live in Commodity Fetishism (Marx); they do not know the link between the commodities they consume and the social relations involved.’
• ‘Re: Marx quoting Antipatros, the Greek poet who hailed the invention of the water-wheel for grinding corn, an invention that is the elementary form of all machinery, as the giver of freedom to female slaves, and the bringer back of the golden age. What the f?’
[ee responds: Marx discusses the golden age the Greeks were referring to, because they too thought machines would free people. This ‘golden age’ interestingly, could very well have been what they had learned from Asia and Africa. About the state of so-called ‘primitive communism’ before the domination of Kings. Which is why ee Focus this week discusses the society that gave rise to the Buddha.)
• ‘If ee wishes to talk about elementary form of machinery, goddamn Asia has plenty for u to feast on! The whites didn’t even know how to build a drainage system! From all those poetic and industrialization remarks, ee is still lost in the 1800s or before, in the world of white men. We have China today, and you can look at their model? They didn’t just industrialize overnight u know? Do you want SL to repeat the same steps as England did? Maybe missed the point that England industrialized because they chopped off the fingers of Indian weavers who were BETTER than machines by the whites! Provide a model, not a rant on England! Use China, it’s more in line with what’s possible today, without having to colonize and intentionally destroy the industries of another industrial nation! Indian would have boomed to become an industrial power if it wasn’t for England – it’s called evolution of industries! It’s an inevitable phenomena if you trace back human technological evolution !!’
[ee responds: It’s not question of ee being stuck the , tho that’s exactly where the present ‘garment’ game. is stuck. Assembly is what SL always doing… what a tailor shop is. The garment business a fancy tailor shop.]
• ‘Re: Industrialization & Food Production – this is why ee should talk more about agricultural development, or industries geared towards agricultural production to meet our home market first, then we can worry about other types of industries. And for that, it’s OK for us to learn how to assemble a tractor first, rather than build a plant to produce tractors, because the state nor any local capitalist has the balls to do that. ee’s request to build a machine plant that produces tractors on its own with little human labour is like asking to build a spaceship to go to Mars or an International Space station for SL! It’s a bizzare idea that no one is ready to do. ee should be realistic. Any idea ahead of its time, or ahead of its people, or ahead of its capitalist class, or ahead of its state, is a worthless idea in practice and serves only as an academic paper of an idealist, not a practical plan!’
[ee responds: Nobody has to repeat the same steps. There’s something known as the late-starter advantage. We do not have to repeat their mistakes. At the same time the trajectory they have taken shows where we should or should not go]
• ‘Re: machines making machines! ee is recommending ideas as if we have a socialist and ideologically committed party at the helm of our industry or state. Maybe talking to dead Com Stalin? Or dead Srimavo’s government? Maybe too much confidence in GR and SLPP? This is not an attack, but try toning it down a little, so more people see it as viable, by suggesting we learn how to industrialize first, by building an institution for it, and sending some people to China as well as Germany and other industrial nations to learn what “space” or opportunities we have, to internally analyze our situation and capacity, to survey our people’s competence and organize local capitalists, providing state co-operation and discourse on how to inch towards industrialization? These are some things ee can talk about? Maybe this institution can provide degrees for those who want to learn what industrialization is and how to carry it out. A formal system to educate more young people about modern production etc? This would increase the chances of such discourse in the future?
[ee responds: Nobody is saying tomorrow we’ll make machines. But making machines is what made them take off. Remember the great divide between Europe and Asia really took place in the 1870s, after they developed machines to make machines. If ee didn’t mention what they’ve done, then it’d be ignorant of the tasks at hand.]
• re Stalin: ‘One of the first acts of the Bolsheviks, on 27 December 1917, was to nationalize the Russian financial system. A lesson learned from the 1871 Paris Commune, which had failed to control the bankers, who then invited Germany to massacre them. The Bolsheviks cancelled debts and expropriated bank property, resulting in sanctions from the German, French and English governments. The USSR had to clandestinely import high technology and know-how from the Western powers. The Bolsheviks exploited imperialist rivalries and internal divisions. They dealt with Germany, resentful of the other Western powers because of the Versailles Treaty. When the whites blockaded them further, the USSR had to adopt the doctrine of “Socialism in One Country” 1926-28. By the time of the first effective 5-Year Plan (1928-33), the USSR had already given up on receiving tech from the West. The first 5-Year Plan anticipated war during its final years (1931-33). But that war happened only in 1941, by which time the English and others had to reluctantly ally with the USSR, to defeat the Nazi war machine. One that was done, they turned on the USSR.’ (Random Notes)
A2. Quotes of the Week_
• ‘We’re supposed to salute white power and die nobly unvaccinated, to own the Commies. This is literally western policy… a choice made by western governments and media. The white vaccines are not actually better (esp against Delta) and the best vaccine is the one you can get. Instead of spreading this simple message, these monsters are spreading disinformation for geopolitical advantage… using Covid-19 to attack their enemies, and we’re all just collateral damage. It’s an ongoing crime against humanity… spread vaccine hesitancy where there was none. Western lies kill as much as western drones… These countries have made international travel WHITE VACCINES ONLY… This is vaccine apartheid.’ – indica.medium.com/the-west-attacked-my-people-with-anti-vax-propaganda-and-its-killing-us-1e6fd812403e (see ee Sovereignty)
• ‘Forthcoming Malabar exercises off the coast of Guam in the Indo-Pacific are taking place ahead of the much-awaited Quad summit in the US in which Australian, Japanese and Indian leaders are scheduled to meet US President Biden in October.’ – ee Sovereginty
• This isn’t a matter of the West imposing its vision on Sri Lanka, these are international norms that Sri Lanka has pledged to respect and uphold.’ – US Ambassador Teplitz (ee Sovereignty)
• ‘When Yahapalana took over in 2015 the economy was on a sound footing with the GDP at a healthy 6%, foreign debt as a ratio of GDP was about 75% and all other economic parameters favourable. Sri Lanka was considered second only to China in the scale of development in Asia. By 2019 Yahapalana had managed to bring down the GDP to 1% and raise the debt ratio to 95% without the assistance of a civil war or a pandemic. The politicians responsible for those blunders are now in the Opposition trying to topple the government.’ (ee Economy, Woes)
• ‘Sri Lanka has a repository of highly qualified academics & researchers in agriculture; about 500 agriculture PhDs in SL universities, research institutes and other organisations… The coconut sector has more than 400,000ha at present. Coconut accounts for ~12% of all agricultural produce… the Brahmins of the coconut industry in SL such as the Coconut Research Institute, the Coconut Cultivations Board and Ministry of Coconut Industries have failed to optimise their potential.’ (ee Agriculture, Coconut)
• ‘The fisheries industry accounts for 1.3% of GDP, with a growth rate of 9.9, 1.5% of export earnings in 2019… a source of direct and indirect employment from fishing to processing, distributing and trade, boat-building and maintenance… 583,000 employed, with a supporting workforce of 2.7 million. Fish contributes over 60% of all animal protein consumed in Sri Lanka and is the main source of protein for low-income groups… 200- 300 ships – mainly oil tankers from the Persian Gulf to East Asia -pass daily .’ (ee Agriculture, Fisheries)
• ‘The Archbishop of Colombo says he does not want gas power plants. The Bishop of Chilaw does not want coal power plants. However, the Holy See and the Vatican gets 45% of electricity from gas, 10% from coal. Good for Pope; not for Sri Lanka. The end result: more oil used for power generation, the curse of Sri Lanka. Of course, for oil power plants, there will be no such divine intervention.’ (ee Industry, Pope)
• ‘With security rapidly deteriorating, the US planned to send in 3,000 troops to help evacuate some personnel from the US Embassy in Kabul. Separately, England said about 600 troops would be deployed on a short-term basis to support English nationals leaving the country, and Canada is sending special forces to help evacuate its embassy.’ (ee Sovereignty, Afghanistan)
A3. Random Notes (‘Seeing Number in Chaos’)_
• Anti-Sinhala Buddhism is the new evangelical religion. Some children are taught that the use of elephants in the Perahera is cruel, as they are ‘wild’ animals. Yet, the great irrigation systems were built by workers and elephants. The elephants were the front-end loaders, military tanks and humvees – all-terrain vehicles – since 500 BC at least. We traded elephants to countries throughout Asia. Who drove them ‘wild’? The English, now claiming to be great animal lovers, were the principal mass murderers of elephants, driving them into the low country, out of the hills where they lived, as they were clearcutting land for plantations. These children are enjoying imported luxuries and plantation products soaked in slavery, made at greater costs than killing elephants. If the elephants got visas to London, there would be none left for sure.
• The Excise Department 2019 Performance Report (publishing date unknown) has deviated from standard statistics and changed their annual report, removed such items as: 1. How much alcohol companies produce? 2. How much tax each alcohol market sector provides? 3. Amounts of alcohol imported and exported? 4. Licenses granted.
The Excise Department (ED) collects taxes and levies from 17 hard liquor manufacturers and 2 beer producers. Parliamentary investigations (COPA) recently observed, the ED had failed to recruit a legal officer though it’s an essential post. Before Covid-19, the department had earned an income of around Rs600-700 million on an average per day from the sale of liquor alone.
Excise duty revenue declined to Rs111.3 billion in the first 4 months of 2021, compared to Rs127.6bn in the same period of 2020, due to decline of revenue from motor vehicles, cigarettes and petroleum products, despite gains in liquor and other excisable articles. Excise duty revenue accounted for 26% of tax revenue and 23.1% of total revenue collected in the first 4 months of 2021 while achieving 23.4% of the annual estimate….
• Sismondi!: ‘The first grave doubts as to the divine character of the capitalist order came to bourgeois economists under the impact of the first crises of 1815 and 1818-19 in England… Sismondi put his finger on every one of the sore spots of bourgeois economics: the ruin of small enterprise; the drift from the country; the proletarisation of the middle classes; the impoverishment of the workers; the displacement of the worker by the machine; unemployment; the dangers of the credit system; social antagonisms; the insecurity of existence; crises and anarchy. His harsh, emphatic scepticism struck a specially shrill discord with the complacent optimism, the idle worship of harmony as preached by vulgar economics which, in the person of MacCulloch in England and of Say in France, was becoming the fashion in both countries.’ (Rosa Luxemburg, The Accumulation of Capital)
So what does it have to do with Sri Lanka? Many of Sismondi’s ideas are very dominant here, especially among those who call themselves Nationalists, Leftists, Socialists, Anarchists, etc. The funny thing is that even though most Sri Lankans do not know Sismondi, yet they spread his romantic gospel against capitalism, against industrialization, for return to the small farmer, etc.
ee does not agree with him, but he’s very important. His pointing to capitalism’s first industrial crisis in 1815, shows why England had to grab all of Sri Lanka. Sismondi’s New Principles of Political Economy refuted dominant economists of the time, e.g. Say and Ricardo. Sismondi had a tremendous influence on Marx, Lenin and Luxemburg. Lenin, in particular, traces the dominant ideas of the main opponents of Tsarism, the Narodniks (Janatha Mithuro) to Sismondi’s ideas, in the great work A Characterization of Economic Romanticism: Sismondi & Our Native Sismondists (1897). ee highly recommends this Lenin classic.
• How do we train ourselves to read the news? When imperialist embassies are promoting SMEs etc, who will ask, what exactly do they mean? That we keep providing them primary raw materials, while they sell us the machines to process them? When ‘inventions’ are praised (and never ever heard of again), who asks how the parts and machines that makes those parts, are made? When ‘exports’ are praised, ask, how many of the inputs were imported to make the exports? When ‘aid’ is provided, how much of it is to impose their methods, technology, experts? Who makes the machines? Who makes the parts? Who makes the machines that make the machines?
• ee really appreciates the Reader Comments, to clarify thoughts. ee is merely a crude attempt to spark a long overdue a national conversation about industrialization, which the media is paid to ignore or prevent.
It may be argued, the main job of a colonized media is to constantly present arguments against our industrialization. These arguments inform the micro and macro and meta narratives of both media and academe. Most people are taught to object, saying: ‘We are lazy, we lack a big market, lack economy scale’, etc. Not true. Many of these arguments have been keenly refuted in studies like SBD de Silva’s The Political Economy of Underdevelopment.
The other media tactic is, keep emphasizing small industry, SMEs, exports, FDI, etc (see ee Economists). There must be a media factory paid to produce and distribute these anti-industrialization arguments. Then again perhaps that’s what the multibillion$ public-relations/PR advertising industry (dominated by Unilever) is all about, dedicated to promoting imports etc. Importers have captured our home market, which if we were really independent, would form the basis of industrialization. The other media game is to misname:
Entrepreneur. Industry. Investment. Words used and abused in Sri Lanka’s English media. Entrepreneurship for what? Industry for what? Investment for what?
History teaches no country can thrive unless it takes control of its banks, and invests its profits in modern production. Industry is not just handicraft, assembly or manufacture. Industry is the making of machines that make machines. Entrepreneurship refers to making something new, a product or a process. People who are called ‘entrepreneurs’ here, are merely rentiers. They invest in property, etc. Easy money that usually fails to develop the economy, because the main goods used are always imported!
• Sumptuary laws ordered what people could wear, usually using religious and moralizing vocabulary, yet these laws were inspired by social and economic priorities, aimed at preventing waste by the wealthy classes and the drain of capital reserves to foreign suppliers.
The 14th century English King Edward III (1327-77) ordered the Lord Chancellor (later speaker, head of the judiciary, etc.) to sit on a wool bale, now known as ‘The Woolsack’, in order to symbolize the central nature and great importance of the wool trade to the economy of England in the Middle Ages. English fought the French at Battle of Crécy in 1346 to protect vital English wool trade routes with continental Europe.
In the 18th century, the English passed laws to ban wearing of clothes from India, even as they continued to destroy industry in Sri Lanka and India.
• Immediately after the 1917 Revolution, the Bolsheviks occupied and took control of the State Bank in Petrograd. In December, they announced a state monopoly on banking. Bank vaults were inspected, confiscating gold bullions and coins, and transferring them to the national gold fund. They also cancelled Russian government debts and confiscated the equity capital of former private banks.
The People’s Bank (PB) of the Russian Soviet Republic was established on the premises of the State Bank, as a part of the People’s Commissariat for Finance, mainly to issue and distribute banknotes. Soviet institutions and organizations had to keep their money and valuables in the People’s Bank or the State Treasury. Treasuries were merged with PB institutions. The PB’s functions were passed to the finance units of the executive committees of the Soviets of Workers, Peasants and Red Army Deputies. Then, the State Bank of the RSFSR was established within the People’s Commissariat for Finance: to use loans and other bank transactions to assist the development of industry, agriculture and trade turnover, and with to concentrate money turnover while establishing proper monetary circulation.
B. Special Focus_
B1. The 1953 Hartal Leads to 1956
1953 August 12 – the great one-day Hartal led by the LSSP, the Communist Party and the FP (Federal Party), involving 100,000s of men and women, young and old, took place across the country, prompting the UNP cabinet to retreat to an English warship before declaring a State of Emergency. Several people were killed by the police in this first major act of organized mass resistance after ‘Independence’ – a day of action that would inspire thousands of future activists across the island for the next two decades.
In 1952, DS Senanayake had fallen off his English horse and died on Galle Face Green across from the Colombo Club – favoured haunt of the elite and the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon. The English media claimed he had chosen his son Dudley Senanayake, who won the next election. An election that saw the church establishments declare: to vote for a Marxist ‘was a mortal sin’!
Then the economy worsened. The end of the US war on Korea led to the end of ‘the export boom’, where Sri Lanka had sold rubber to the white war machine. Terms of trade grew even more unfavourable – due to the refusal of imperialist powers, particularly the US, to pay a fair price for tea and rubber. The World Bank (WB/IBRD) agreed to ‘rescue’ the economy, on certain conditions. The white US Governor of Ceylon’s Central Bank even advised the Prime Minister to seek an election before imposing the WB’s stringent criteria.
‘Shortages’ then led to pressure on the government to increase the price of rice. As demanded by the first World Bank mission to Sri Lanka, Finance Minister JR Jayewardene increased rice prices from 25 cents a measure to 72 cents. Before the 1952 election the UNP had said they would never increase the price of rice above 25 cents a measure – a headline in their paper Siyarata. But in the 1953 budget JR raised the price to 70 cents. Postal rates were also increased, and the midday bun grabbed from schoolchildren. The Left campaigned against the increases, by collecting and submitting hundreds of signatures to parliament, joining national protest against the cutting also of the rice-ration by a 1/4 measure, and the increase in flour price by 15 cents.
The US lobby in Sri Lanka opposed the rising calls for the conclusion of a Rubber-Rice Pact with the People’s Republic of China to solve the rice shortages. The US lobby was led by JR Jayewardene, resulting in his nickname Yankee Dicky. (UNP proponent of the pact within the government, RG Senanayake, was in turn, dubbed China Dicky, for then too the US government financed a tsunami of Sinophobia)
The Left collected thousands of signatures, to build up mass agitation outside parliament, leading up to the Hartal of 12 August 1953. Between 1945 and 1953 the political balance had shifted slightly, and trade union membership doubled. The population of the country in 1953 stood at 8 million, and after almost 10 years of free education from primary school to university, 65% of those over age 5 were now considered ‘literate.’
The Hartal (a Hindi word) was a mass one-day cessation of all work, different from a general strike because it involved the cessation of all business, involving small business as well as big business support. In Ceylon there were not many shopkeepers about to support a hartal– so it became essentially a strike.
The Hartalwas called by 3 parties, the LSSP, CP, FP. The Ceylon Workers’ Congress, under pressure from the Indian High Commission, stayed out. The newly formed SLFP also stayed out. SWRD Bandaranaike supported the Opposition, but refused to join in actual mass action. Yet he, the CP and LSSP addressed a mass meeting outside parliament when JR was presenting the Budget – with over 50,000 people protesting on Galle Face Green.
The buildup for the Hartal really came after the presentation of the Budget. On 12 August 1953 LakeHouse Newspapers came out with headline, Work as Usual! But in rural areas, mass actions developed spontaneously just before the Hartal. On the day of the Hartal, almost 10,000 students, 40,000 workers and unionists played a key role. Then, Dudley Senanayake in the middle of the day declared a State of Emergency under the Public Security Act, and by the afternoon there was shooting – with 12 killed. The UNP Cabinet fled to an English warship in harbour, and even though the Hartal was only 24 hours, a State of Emergency was declared for one month after. The prisons across the country were filled with detainees. The offices of all the Left parties were raided and their printing presses sealed.
A very important point about the Hartal: there were no attacks on persons. The bus companies run by private bus owners were targeted – hated because all were very reactionary and supported the UNP. The South-West Bus Co and the Gamini Bus Co buses were stopped and stoned – but only after all the passengers alighted. It was a real mass confrontation – the biggest ever in our history. Never before and never after was there such a major confrontation. It was the real last attempt by the Left for sanctions outside parliament.
(For an opposing view on the origins and effects of the 1953 Hartal, read Nalin de Silva’s argument there’s no socialism, cos there’s no working class:ee Politics, The Hartal)
B2. Murder of a Sri Lankan Worker & Japan’s Industrial Olympics
The Japanese government reckons they need 10 million foreign workers in the next 50 years. They project their working-age (15-64) population may shrink from 75.2 million in 2017 to 67.7mn in 2030, to 44mn in 2060, because of ageing, with the overall population projected to drop to 87mn.
• Foreigners in Japan make up 2% of the 127mn population. It has the lowest foreign-born population of all OECD (all the top imperialist countries), except for Mexico. Few foreigners are allowed to become Japanese citizens, and even fewer are granted asylum. Yet Japan was the 4th-largest donor to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees in 2017.
• Foreign permanent residents in Japan reached 2.23mn, a 72% increase on 2 decades ago, with non-permanent visas also rising, also surreptitiously increasing temporary workers and skilled workers. They eased their near-ban on visas for low-skilled workers, allowing foreign maids to work in ‘special economic zones’, and relaxed requirements for ‘carers’ – looking after the elderly and the sick. They made student and trainee visas easier to obtain, knowing full well they’d be exploited for work that needs very little study or training, like at kombinis (corner stores, often staffed by Chinese) or in forestry, fishing, farming, food-processing. Companies also claimed shortages of workers in construction, healthcare, home service and long-term care, as well as in restaurants.
2018: Japan’s labor ministry noted their corporations were failing to pay migrant workers adequate overtime, and subjecting workers to unsafe conditions.
As usual migration is used to put pressure on local Japanese workers. Mitsubishi Electric, eg, is accused of a number of work-related deaths, even pushing workers to commit suicide. One worker killed himself after working more than 100 hours of overtime per month.
2019: Toyota’s ‘company’ union stressed performance when determining workers’ pay increases, rather than continuing the current with seniority the main criteria. Traditionally, Japanese workers receive automatic wage increases due to age or length of service. Some major Japanese companies changed their wage system based on seniority to worker ‘ability and performance’. From July 2021 Mizuho Financial Group was set to abolish automatic wage hikes for 5,000 managers at its group firms including Mizuho Bank and Mizuho Trust & Banking Co, to ‘motivate’ younger employees. In June 2021, in preparation for this, Nikkei reported Mizuho Bank CEO Koji Fujiwara would go, while Tatsufumi Sakai, boss of parent Mizuho Financial Group (8411.T), would take a pay reduction. However Fujiwara stayed on with a 50% pay cut for just 4 months, while Sakai was docked for six. Three IT & Systems Group leaders were reassigned – not fired.
2020: Keidanren chairman and Hitachi CEO opposed the US move to halt certain work visas, saying it would disrupt Japanese company operations there. The US government had paused issue of permanent-resident ‘green cards’, and included some work visas like H-1B, largely used by technology companies, H-2B for nonagricultural temporary workers, as well for exchange visitors and intracompany transferees.
2021: June, Tokyo police Tuesday accused Uber Japan Co, of hiring foreigners overstaying their visas…
July 31, Japan declared 350,000 job opportunities open for migrant workers, under the Special Skilled Worker visa introduced in April 2019, not specifying what workers would be doing exactly but proclaimed to seek them for 14 high-sounding occupational categories: care workers; cleaning buildings; machine parts and tooling industries; industrial machinery industry; electric, electronics, and information industries; construction industry; shipbuilding and ship machinery industry; automotive repair and maintenance; aviation industry, accommodation industry, agriculture; fishery; manufacturing of food and beverages; and food service industry.
July 2021, Japan reported, consumer spending had dropped, particularly for services. Capital formation and government spending, too, witnessed similar decline. This year’s shunto (unionized workers’ annual wage negotiations) show wages only grew 1.8%, the lowest in 12 years. A rise in the unemployment rate to 2.8% in April from 2.6% in March will limit wage increases. Disposable income has essentially been flat since the end of 2018.
Aggregate income and spending in Japan is further restrained by demographics. Total population and the working age population are falling at a faster pace than just a year ago. The age 15-64 population fell by 590,000 in April from a year earlier.
The number of foreign-born workers in Japan increased by just 65,500 in 2020, not enough to make up for even half the decline in the working age population. Rising labor force participation can help fill in some of the gap, but stronger immigration is necessary to keep the labor force growing.
Japanese industries that typically employ migrant workers are among the hardest hit by the pandemic. The shortage of foreign workers will encourage more investment in labor-saving technology to lift productivity growth.
Global demand for Japanese manufactures is still strong, with goods exports in April up 7.9% from December 2019. Exports of semiconductor machinery continue to rise, reaching a record high in April that was up a staggering 93% from a year ago. However, semiconductor machinery exports held up reasonably well in April 2020. The global shortage of semiconductors is driving demand for the machinery and equipment needed to produce them. China has been the largest buyer, accounting for more than 40% of Japan’s semiconductor machinery exports in April.
China is keen to raise its capacity for semiconductor production since the US sanctioned China’s largest chipmaker and implemented export controls to restrain China’s efforts to reach the technological frontier of chipmaking. The downside to the chip shortage: automakers struggling to keep up with demand. As a result, exports of motor vehicles in Japan were 6.7% lower than 2 years ago, accounting for a 72billion yen loss. Yet, the gain in semiconductor machinery continues to more than make up for any export loss in autos.
A weaker yen, which lost about 5% of its value against the US$ this year, will make exports more competitive, it will also make many imported commodities more expensive as they are priced in dollars. Moving forward, the trade balance should remain in surplus as import prices stabilize and external demand continues to accelerate with the reopening of the world’s largest economies.
Despite higher commodity prices and worries of inflationary pressures in other parts of the world, in Japan inflation is virtually nonexistent. Core inflation, which excludes fresh food, has not posted yearly gain since March 2020. At 15.9% of GDP, Japan’s direct fiscal stimulus was the 6th highest among advanced economies. After the initial surge of pent-up demand, weak wage growth, a declining population, and scarce migrant workers will likely put Japan back on the slow-growth trajectory it had faced before the pandemic struck.
The Keidanren pompously claims ‘Japan needs to increase diversity in order to become more industrially competitive’, boost research, and improve education. In the name of ‘womenomics’, they claimed Japanese women’s participation in the wider economy was constrained by restrictions on the immigration of home service & care workers, as it was difficult for Japanese women to combine work & family life.
They claim, immigration sparks entrepreneurship & innovation, like in Silicon Valley; the number of entrepreneurs, as a share of those employed, is among the lowest in the OECD, especially for women. They wish to double Japan’s low foreign direct investment from 4 % of GDP using immigration, aiding international companies that require bilingual staff.
B3. Origins of the Buddha & the Sangha
The Buddha was born into a Ganasangha, a federation of ‘tribal chiefdoms’, where property was held in common, and alienation – especially of land – required the consent of the entire kinship community… The division of labour was biological: men specialised in warfare to protect the tribe and the herd from enemy attack. Women and girls tended the cattle, and to this day the word for daughter in many South Asian languages is derived from the word duh – ‘one who draws the milk’. Matters relating to the collective welfare of the group were settled in the common assembly – the sabha – tribal council.
The ganasanghas differed from the Brahmanic monarchies of the Kuru-Pancala region, and the monarchical states of NE India. Siddhattha Gotama was raised in and practised social traditions which led to the values and practices on which the Buddha established his Sangha. According to the Buddhist scriptures, the West Gangetic and Middle Gangetic regions had been settled by 16 mahajanapada or large-scale settlements.
At the time Siddhartha Gotama renounced household life, the Sakyan federation to which he belonged had been annexed and reduced to the status of a semi-autonomous district of the Kingdom of Kosala. Magadha rose over the ruins of other janapadas and later became the greatest empire in ancient India. Historically however, the renown of Sakya would surpass them all since it produced an extraordinary human being, Siddhartha Gotama.
The Social Organisation of the Ganasanghas – The ganasangha system, described as republican or oligarchical, is more accurately defined as sangha – federations or unions of ganas – tribes. They lived along the lower slopes of the Himalayas, perhaps settling down there before the dense forests of the Mid-Gangetic Valley were cleared. These ksatriya settlers may have moved up towards the hills to preserve their time-honoured traditions. They fiercely opposed the monarchical system and held in honour the ancient, pre-brahminic traditions of their ancestors.
Social stratification in the ganasangha consisted of a simple 2-tier system: the property-owning ruling khattiya stratum and the property-less manual labourers, the dasa-kammakaras. The subordinated status of the working class was reproduced by the prohibition of marriage between the khattiyas and dasa-kammakaras, thereby automatically excluding the latter from property rights – the property qualification excluding the dasa- kammakara from political participation. In the first Buddha Sangha this disqualification was abolished; men and women irrespective of their former birth status enjoyed equal rights, and property was commonly owned.
The khattiya women of the ganasangha were freer than women in brahminised regions. They also seem to have been women with minds of their own as can be judged by the events that led to the establishment of a female branch of mendicant teachers in the Buddha Sangha. This is perhaps the earliest known example of a group of women organising themselves to publicly demand and win the same right as men.
The Buddha, knowing the ganasangha traditions, enunciated 7 cardinal principles to ensure the continued unity and welfare of their sangha. They would not decline but prosper, so long as they:
1. foregather often and frequent the public meetings of their clan;
2. meet together in concord and carry out their undertakings in concord;
3. act in accordance with what has been thus enacted, and abrogate nothing that has been enacted, and act according to their ancient institutions
The next 4 principles are specifications of ‘ancient institutions’, which the Buddha regarded as hallmarks of a civilized ganasangha:
4. They honour, esteem, revere and support their elders, and make it a point of duty to hearken to their words.
5. No clan women and girls are detained among them by force or abduction.
6. They honour and esteem and revere and support cetiya shrines at home and abroad and do not allow the proper offerings and rites, as formerly given and performed, to fall into desuetude… Cetiyas or stupas were large dome-shaped burial mounds, containing the bones of tribal ancestors.
7. Rightful protection, defence and support shall be fully provided for the arahats among them, so that arahats from a distance may enter the realm, and therein may live at ease….
The first 6 conditions relate to the proper ordering of society. This last condition emphasizes that social decadence can be prevented only if a society has built-in safeguards to maintain high standards of public and private morality. Every society needs men and women who would be models and standard bearers of moral excellence. The Buddha does not suggest his own Sangha would automatically measure up to this demand. Respect and support should be given to men and women for their unimpeachable moral conduct and not because of any a-priori claim of privileged treatment. The Buddha was very clear: True arahats, he insisted, are those who abstain from slaying creatures; modest, show kindness, abide friendly and compassionate to all creatures; abstain from taking what has not been given; live chaste lives; abstain from falsehood; stay aloof from frivolous activities and shun luxurious living… (info from Nalin Swaris’ The Buddha’s Way to Human Liberation)
B4. The Communist Party of China & The Industrial Party
– The benefits of listening to ‘internet trolls’,Rathindra Kuruwita, 2021 August 8
Many assume the Communist Party of China (CPC) combs the country’s social media platforms in search of critical content with the intention of putting people under house arrest. And of course, sometimes bloggers and message board theorists do get placed in house arrest; however, more often the CPC does this to know what’s being said about their policies.
In recent years, since Hu Jintao but especially after Xi Jinping became the General Secretary of the CPC, political authorities have increased their surveillance of what is being posted, because they recognize posters can give valuable feedback and ideas to the leadership. In China, ministries and even smaller state bodies have access to sources like Online Public Opinion, a People’s Daily publication that compiles online thought, and other service providers. This stands in contrast with most countries in the anglosphere which are happy to undermine and cancel critics that question what is important to those that run the countries by calling them Russian or Chinese agents.
The CPC is particularly interested in the massively popular finance and development bloggers. These circles are usually immune from the routine online rectification campaigns and the People’s Online Public Opinion Annual Report in 2011 specifically mentioned the value of tracking the opinions. Not only are the ideas of these bloggers and message board theorists listened to, but there are a number of occasions that these have shaped the core policies of the party.
This article is about a group of bloggers and messageboard theorists, often from elite universities with an academic background in science, technology, engineering, retroactively christened as The Industrial Partyby Wang Xiaodong, writer and famous stoker of nationalist sentiment; and their impact on CPC’s policies in the last decade.
The Industrial Party – The 1990s were an important decade for the People’s Republic of China, with reforms and opening-up by Deng Xiaoping gathering pace. However, it was also one of the least intellectual eras of the PRC. Intellectuals were marginalized and the CPC turned instead to the IMF and World Bank for direction.
There was also less space than in the 1980s for dissenting views to run in traditional media, but internet message boards were flourishing on computer networks at elite universities. By the early 2000s they were spreading out onto commercial networks. Those like Zhong Qing, particularly with academic backgrounds in science, technology, and engineering, found a community online. Their boards shared a focus on military affairs and current events.
These young men were ideologically heterogeneous but were bound by their desire to discuss how industrial policy and scientific expertise could lead China away from financialization, which they believed was dehumanizing. They were extremely concerned about ‘996 working hours’ – 9am-9pm, 6 days a week, which had led to the weakening of Chinese society. Those in the Industrial Party believe that industrialization should become, like science and democracy, a universal value.
At a time when CPC’s official political and economic orthodoxy was the promotion of foreign direct investment, low-end export-oriented manufacturing, and allowing certain sectors to be exposed to the market; Zhong openly predicted the Chinese economy would collapse if current policies continued. He called for technocratic state control of key sectors to shield them from competition and advocated a radical industrial policy that could catapult the nation forward and give it a technological and political lead over the West.
This was the early 2000s and the idea that China might abandon its comparative advantage in low-end manufacturing to start building jets and chips was radical. At that time no one, except Chinese ‘internet edge lords’, believed China could or should challenge Western hegemony or that it would overtake the West. But everything changed few years later; Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao were replaced by Xi Jinping. The great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation began.
Xi & the Mainstreaming of the Industrial Party – Under Xi, the key ideas of the Industrial Party, restoring the grand development narrative, cherishing scientific thinking, and leapfrogging the West through a focus on advanced technology, have taken center stage in CPC policy. Whatever the case, the Industrial Party moved from obscure opposition to accelerationist cheerleaders just as message boards were giving way to social media. Online thinkers on China’s development could now reach a much wider audience.
Shenzhen Ningnanshan is now the new face of the Industrial Party, and his writing mainly focuses on saving the nation and breaking Western hegemony through technological development. These ideas are backed by Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era and energized by a trade war with the US. In 2018 Shenzhen caused a stir with a piece questioning the liveability of cities, ‘My Complaints as a Member of the Middle Class’, warning the CPC not to emulate the Hong Kong model of using real estate to ‘squeeze the common people to make a minority of capitalists extremely wealthy’. This post also specifically mentioned his readership among the higher-ups. Shenzhen fears, allowing the market to run wild will lead to serious social conflict; a middle class slaving to pay off mortgages, the relatively wealthy living in conditions worse than those enjoyed by the average Westerner; and most people living in hellholes similar to the cage homes of Hong Kong. He also speaks on the implications of these developments on demographics.
Family Formation and the CPC – But what is the purpose of doing all this? Why focus on industry? Industrialization and leapfrogging into becoming a leading technological giant, ultimately is done to facilitate better family formation. To move citizens away from the dehumanization of financialization.
Those who have paid any attention to events that have transpired in the last few months in China; the removal of limits on children to overhauling its $100billion education tech sector; are further examples of the CPC listening to the Industrial Party. 40% of Chinese parents spend 25-30% of their income on education and the CPC rightly see this as a barrier in encouraging more babies. Millions of public houses are being built to reduce the pressure on families that had been renting.
There is no doubt China faces great challenges, but critics tend to under-appreciate its strengths. Chief among them, in my view, has been the CPC’s surprising adaptability. The CPC has achieved a good record of pulling itself out of sticky situations: in 1992 when it restarted reform, after the financial crisis of 1997, and again in 2008. That record was validated most spectacularly again last year in the aftermath of the Covid-19 outbreak. This adaptability and openness to new ideas are what makes the CPC understand and accept that out there somewhere are messageboard theorists who will eventually present a potent antithesis to the CPC’s best-laid plans. So far, the CPC has embraced them as insightful sources of new ideas.
(Rathindra Kuruwita: award-winning journalist, research areas include national security, China and technology; fellow at Hawaii’s East-West Center, 2010, Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, 2018; participant of the International Visitors Leadership Program US, 2016. He has an MSc in Security Studies at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore; resource person at the Institute of National Security Studies, SL)
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.
• The Whites Are Attacking My People with Anti-Vax Propaganda – Samarajiva
• Government to get (well-deserved) thrashing at the UNHRC this September – Jayatilleka
• Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Easter attacks prevented him from naming Indian
‘Indian intelligence had prior information of the date of the operation….someone within Zahran Hashim’s outfit worked for them.’
• Head of Sri Lanka Catholic church alleges attempt to pin Easter attack on ISIS
• India claims Seizure of AK-47s, ammo from SL boat: LTTE, Pakistan links identified
• Large number of Lankans listed as missing are living abroad under different names – FM
• Erasing the Eelam Victory Part 2 B
‘Sri Lanka’s good fortune Norway failed as facilitator as they may have created another South Sudan’
• Moragoda roadmap reference to loss of Indian soldiers here questionable & inappropriate
‘t would certainly be a mistake on Sri Lanka’s part to recognise India’s uninvited intervention here as a benevolent example of the strategic partnership between the two countries.’
• Moragoda wants “Senate at the Centre, where all ethnic groups are fairly represented”
• India puts into motion ferry service from Puducherry to Jaffna
• Indian CEO Forum welcomes Lanka’s High Commissioner designate Pathfinder Moragoda
‘The ICF is the preeminent body for Indian investment in Sri Lanka…’
• Pathfinder Foundation webinar ‘In Conversation’ with Lord Naseby
• England suppressed ‘robust evidence’ at Sri Lanka’s expense at UNHRC – Lord Naseby
• Police Scotland halts training for Sri Lanka police over abuse fears
• 2021-2022 Canada Fund for local initiatives recipients announced
‘Centre for Human Rights and Development; Colombo Friends in Need Society; Comdu.it; Chrysalis; Media Law Forum; Save the Beach Maldives; Transparency International Sri Lanka; Verité Research and Women & Democracy’
• We’re looking for a strong partnership – US Ambassador Teplitz
“I’m certainly not willing to say all the diaspora groups have an LTTE link.”
• Army extends seed capital to pardoned ex-LTTE combatants courtesy Tamil philanthropist
• Prez in powwow with civil society: post-war national reconciliation priority
• Need for new patriotic Political Movement to rescue country, Sinhala Nation & Buddha Sasana
• Tamil Genocide Remembrance – Stirring Up Communal Strife In New Zealand
• Amnesty Intl. says Sri Lankan authorities falter on accountability in ‘Navy 11’ case
• Eradication of terrorism allowed government to fully concentrate on battling Covid-19
• In Sri Lanka, the Tamil link with Buddhism is brushed under the carpet
‘because of the introduction of the ten-yearly population census in 1871 and the institution of universal adult franchise in 1931, that ethnic identity began to be used to garner political support.’
• Going back to Pre-2015 Geneva! – part I – Austin Fernando
• Govt. decides to recruit 20 top diplomats from blue-chip companies
‘Among the Sri Lankan corporates that have been given the task are MAS Holdings, Hayleys, Siddhalepa, Brandix and John Keells.’
• India, Don’t waste the opportunity at UN Security Council
‘India made a clumsy start to its long-awaited presidency. This farcical performance does no credit to India’s claim for permanent membership of the UN Security Council’
• Taliban has 18 of 34 province capitals
‘The USA spent nearly two decades and $830 billion….”
• Taliban neutralises the Afghan warlords
• Spectre of Syria haunts Afghanistan
‘A Balkanisation of Afghanistan is in the cards’
• South China Sea becomes flashpoint despite war on covid virus
‘US, English and Dutch warships conducting operations in the South China Sea on July 29’
• Russia-Israel ties are like matryoshka dolls
‘After Russian intervention in Syria in 2015, Israel and Russia established a so-called deconfliction mechanism to keep them from getting tangled up… In southwestern Daraa, which is not far from the Israeli border, where the Iranian and Russian priorities seem to be working at cross purposes and the Syrian regime finds itself over-stretched’
• Anti-Cuban maneuver in the Organization of American States defeated
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.
• Govt. manipulates Covid data; hides truth from people: Hadunnetti
• Some Christian preachers against COVID vaccine: National Christian Conference
• Colombo Security Conclave: Bangladesh expects Regional Maritime cooperation
• Absence of data protection laws barrier for investment in the country
• Issues in banning polygamy in Sri Lanka.
• Light on Intellectual Property Law
‘Available on our YouTube channel ‘Law Students Association of Sri Lanka’, in all three languages.
• Dock statement evidence lesser weightage recognized in our law – Court of Appeal
• New counter terrorism law will deal with crimes related to cryptocurrency – Ali Sabry
• Sri Lanka’s ‘divine comedy’ and the extraordinary plight of the legal order
• Kilinochchi Magistrate orders police to halt digging where Army uniform, skeletons were found
• Govt gives nod for Rakna Lanka together with Avant-Garde
• Four including airman, sailor arrested for stealing explosive material
• Broken System of Drug Control: Soros NGO
• Sri Lanka to recognise divorces, annulments, separations of Sri Lankan nationals abroad
• Top AG’s Dept. official compelled to retire in spite of court order for her reinstatement
• In defence of the line of Police seniority – Gunaratne
• Lankan troops serving in Lebanon come in for high praise by UNIFIL Commander there
• Sri Lanka’s Elite Rescue Team made Official
‘The A-PAD International Symposium 2021 on Civil-Military Dialogue organized by the Asia Pacific Alliance for Disaster Management was held in Colombo’
• The extraordinary way in which China coped with COVID-19
• Sabre rattling in the ME – it’s all about oil – EDITORIAL
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.
• Making public data public: Sri Lanka misses own targets while India races ahead – US Verité
‘Department of Census and Statistics (DCS) is the primary government agency responsible for collecting and providing access to data that can be used for statistical analysis
• IMF or no IMF, SL needs Economic Analysis and Plan going forward: US Verité Research
‘At forum conducted by Advocata Institute on ‘How to Resolve Sri Lanka’s Debt Crisis Without Seeking Assistance from the International monetary Fund (IMF)’.
• Strike action – a sign of the weakness: Wijewardena
• Replenishing low foreign reserves and strengthening external finances – Sanderatne
‘The plain truth is that the country has to earn foreign exchange by exports of goods and services in excess of funds spent on importing them.’
• Export-oriented industries and FDIs answer to current economic crisis – Abeyratne
• Privilege of University “free education” only to 10% – Abeyratne
• Sri Lanka rupee, economy bought to tipping point by monetary fallacies: Bellwether
• Minister follows Diocletian after printing money, stops short of death penalty – Bellwether
• Amidst Delta scare & Labour strife, will China become Sri Lanka’s new IMF? – Philip
• Perceived Economic Opportunity Index 2021 – PepperCube Consultants
‘The Perceived Economic Opportunity was developed and is measured by the Foundation for Economic Freedom (FEF) in partnership with Friedrich Naumann Stiftung Fur Die Freiheit.’
• China’s crackdown on the three mountains
‘The Chinese leaders were worried that the capitalist sector in China had got too big for its boots.’
• End fossil fuel production through public ownership and a global investment plan
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.
• Govt. faction connived with milk food importers – Federation of National Organizations (FNO)
‘Sugar tax style scam causes huge losses to Treasury’
• SL 1H trade deficit widens YoY by $1b to $4.3 b
• Budget proposals for 2022 discussed under Prime Minister
• Gazette Notification levying taxes on several items
‘Extraordinary Gazette Notification issued imposing a Special Commodity Levy on several items, including Sprats, Dried fish, Kurakkan flour, mustard seeds and salt’
• Govt. to keep essential goods prices from going up; Private Sector Demands Price Hike
‘In May, Sri Lanka had spent $ 253.6 million on consumer goods including food and beverages, dairy, vegetables, sugar and $ 330 million on fuel. In the first five months of 2021, $ 1.3 billion was spent on consumer goods imports and $ 1.7 billion on fuel’
• Is Sri Lanka facing a shortage of Gas, Sugar, Rice & Milk Powder?
• Govt. extends low interest rate working capital loan scheme to SOEs
‘282 partially or fully-owned State enterprises had been crippled as a result of non-operation of market mechanisms due to the COVID-19 pandemic… Rs. 156 billion in loans had been granted to 53,200 entrepreneurs as working capital’
• Exporters lobby for currency depreciation
• Central Bank directs banks not to unduly delay crediting export proceeds
‘banks defer crediting of export proceeds to exporters’ foreign currency accounts until such exporters furnish relevant documents to the banks. This practice has been causing material losses to exporters.’
• Sri Lanka FinMin to direct state firms to borrow at 4%: cabinet spokesman
• Sri Lanka central bank profits rise to Rs63bn in 2020
• Sri Lanka raises de facto one year policy rate by 05bp
• Sri Lanka private borrowings surge to Rs83bn in June, CB credit Rs124bn
‘International Monetary Fund backed ‘flexible exchange rate’ driven by dual anchor conflicts triggered two currency crises in 2015 and 2018 and led to the flight of all capital from rupee debt markets’
• Sri Lanka forex reserves drop to 2,833bn after bond repayment, liquidity injections
• Gold set for modest rally before easing in 2022
• US investments in SL remain disappointingly small: Ambassador Teplitz
‘ Fruit & Vegetable Producers, Processors and Exporters Association Vice-Chairman Jagath Fernando, Spice Council Chairman Sarada De Silva, Coconut Milk Producers Association Chairman Suresh Silva, EDB Chairman Suresh De Mel, and Moderator HVA Foods CEO Charithra Hettiarachchi – SL must “engage constructively with the IMF early as possible”: Ambassador Teplitz told the 5th Annual General Meeting of the SL-USA Business Council (SLUSABC) of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. US foreign direct investment in SL was $ 13 million in 2020, bringing cumulative investment from the US to $274 million….Encouraged by the recent framework agreement between the US New Fortress Energy and the GOSL to negotiate a 40% stake in West Coast Energy Co…. The US funds the US Development Finance Corp., the US Trade Development Agency, USAID and other agencies to promote infrastructure and human capital development. In 2021, the Development Finance Corporation committed $265 million in financing to private SL banks…The most important is to help enact policies to avoid non-transparent irresponsible government borrowing, to manage financial institutions and public finances…with expertise from the US Treasury Department…’
• SL’s state-owned stadiums and playgrounds to be privatized
• Govt.’s woes and people’s responsibilities
• Disaster imminent in Sri Lanka: Stop chicanery and bring in solutions!: Champika
‘SL faces worst ever financial crisis: state revenue dropped by 30% due to the tax relief package in 2020. He said state revenue accounted for only 9.2% of the GDP and 70% of it was spent for interest payment last year.’
• Effectiveness of tax amnesty in Sri Lanka
• U.S. has unparalleled export relationship with SL
‘Partnership for Accelerated Results in Trade, National Expenditure and Revenue (PARTNER) activity was formed among the EDB, CCC and USAID.’
• Fresh $75m SL Development Bonds issue goes undersubscribed
• Sri Lanka sells US$61mn SLDB dollar bonds, post-auction tap open
• Sri Lanka sells most of T-bills offered, yields marginally up
• China’s export growth slows as global risks cloud outlook
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
• Public pressure due to economic hardships to explode: JVP
‘“According to the government figures, Rs. 65,000 was needed for a family of four a month. How many families in this country earn Rs 65,000 a month? People living on estates have to spend over 60 percent of their earnings on food. This is quite similar in other rural areas, too.’
• Hard to operate trains after Railway Control Office infected: Station Masters’ Union (SLSMU)
• Lab technologists flay Health Ministry mafia for not doing rapid PCR tests and helping cronies
‘Health Ministry officials had continuously undermined President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who had instructed the ministry to buy 30 rapid PCR machines’
• Government Nursing Officers’ Association threatens TU action if Govt. fails to lockdown
• Labour Dept. unveils e-survey to assess private sector labour demand for 2022
• Solution to all salary anomalies through next budget – Govt.
• Has government failed in managing forces at work?
‘Ceylon Teachers Union (CTC) played a role in installing the previous Yahapalana government whereas Ceylon Teachers Services Union (CTSU) is the teacher trade union arm of the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP). Jayasinghe was also a JVP member of the western provincial council.’
• Teachers deserve better deal
• Cabinet sub-committee appointed to moot teacher’s salary anomalies
• Teachers and Principals launch sathyagraha campaign
• Opposition cries foul as cops in civvies arrest Sri Lanka student union leader
• Govt. directed police to act with maximum restraint in handling protesters, says Minister
• Ports employees launch protest
‘several issues including the non-correction of salary anomalies and against the sale of 13 acres of land to a Chinese port service company.’
• KNDU Bill should be withdrawn
‘Over 20 non-state sector fee-levying university level degree awarding institutions operating’
• The fight for free education should not end with the KNDU Bill
• Inter-University Bhikku Federation (IUBF) protest Kotelawala Bill
• On What Conditions should Teachers on the Street be Allowed Back in the Classroom?
‘Out of nearly 300,000 students who sit the Advanced Level exam, only about 30,000 students gain admittance to a tertiary education’
• How a Death Exposed a History of Sexual Assault at a Rich Politician’s Home
• Sudden attention on child labour: Whither police intelligence?
‘Ponniah Bandaram, a suspect in this case, is on record admitting to providing domestic aides from the upcountry and stating that the practice is common in the upcountry.’
• Govt. proposes amendments to Labour Ordinance to include domestic workers
‘SL Lanka has over 85,000 domestic workers currently…establishment of Wage Board for domestic workers will protect them under existing labour laws and regulations’
• Servants and the Sri Lankan political landscape
• Plantation workers have progressed but still have a long way to go
‘monetary poverty rates in estate sector saw steep decline from 28% in 2006 to 10% in 2012/13’
• Detained Sri Lankan ’treated like a dog in Japan,’ says family
‘our officials at the detention centre were “reprimanded” over the death, but none had been fired. ..The agency’s investigation team probing the background to Wishma’s death conducted a total of 139 interviews with 63 individuals concerned, and also sought opinions from external specialists.’
• Four websites in connection with human trafficking, suspended
• President to get power to extend Permanent Resident (PR) visas from 5 to 10 years
• First year digital nomad visa fee fixed at $ 500
• Lazy Sinhalayo & African Liberation
• The Tea Planter And His Cook
‘first ever author of a cookery book based on Ceylonese cookery, titled “The Curry Cook’s Assistant” first published in London in 1886’
• Why breastfeeding is important
• Disability Rights a Political Issue
• England ranks SL 61st out of 181 measuring state of youth around the world
• Outgoing VC inducts new VC of Peradeniya campus
• The first Ceylonese M.R.C.P. (London) and F.R.C.S. (Edinburgh)
• Tamil Nadu: Fishermen Hold Massive Protests Demanding Withdrawal of Fisheries Bill
• Farm Laws, Labour Codes: Countrywide Protests by Workers, Farmers
• Migrant Workers’ Union in Bengal
‘Three types include those who go to other states from West Bengal, those who come to West Bengal from other states and those who go abroad, particularly to the Gulf region’.
• Tamil Nadu government digital databank of migrant workers employed in industries
• New Zealand Midwives are on the warpath
• A timeline of sexism in Olympics fashion
‘Norway’s women’s beach handball team was fined £1,300 for wearing shorts instead of bikini bottoms during a European Championship match against Spain.’
• Forging a New Global Workers’ Movement
• Role of Labor Recruiters in Human Trafficking & Forced Labor of Migrant Workers
• Hiroshima & Einstein
• Science for the People: Remembering A Great Scientific Crusader – Richard Lewontin
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.
• Committee of experts to advice on sustainable agriculture
‘Led by Sabaragamuwa University Professor of Environmental Agriculture Priyantha Indralal Yapa’
• PM expedites work on Colombo region canals to control floods
• Partitioning water between agriculture and hydro-power to maximise SL’s clean energy output
‘The largest drain on Sri Lanka’s foreign exchange earnings is in purchasing fossil fuels for power and transport, and in feeding the 22 million people who depend on a mere million hectares of arable land’
• Sri Lanka must invigorate the coconut sector; Palm Oil Deadly
‘The coconut sector which has more than 400,000 hectares at present. Coconut accounts for approximately 12% of all agricultural produce… the Brahmins of the coconut industry in Sri Lanka such as the Coconut Research Institute (CRI), the Coconut Cultivations Board (CCB) and Ministry of Coconut Industries have failed to optimise their potential’
• Sri Lankan coconuts help Yorkshire Dales combat peatland crisis
• Ceylon Grain Elevators, feed milling & poultry profits rose 33.1% in 2ndQ to Rs.82.4 million
‘Poultry producers struggle with shortage of feed and sharp rise in costs… CGE, the producer of Prima branded Chicken and Farmer’s Choice branded animal feed reported revenues of Rs.6.1 billion…’
• Ideal opportunity for Sri Lanka to boost local production and promote fresh milk production
• Milk powder importers demand price hike!
‘Fonterra Sri Lanka also refuted minister’s claim that they had agreed to supply at existing prices….They asking for a price increase of Rs 350 on a kilogram of full cream milk powder . At present, a kilogram is priced at Rs. 945’
• Large scale organised poaching in Sri Lankan waters by the Indian fishing fleet
• NO permission to import carbonic compost fertilizer – Shasheendra Rajapaksa (Video)
‘State Minister was responding to a statement made by Co-Cabinet Spokesman Ramesh Pathirana that the Cabinet had approved the importation of carbonic fertilizer following procurement methods’
• Sri Lanka must regularise all food delivery apps
‘food delivery apps that used to charge 30-40 percent of commission on any given product from the merchant is now adding the commission to the consumer, which is the displayed price in the app.’
• The X-Press Pearl disaster and the imperative for regional maritime cooperation
• Govt. to procure organic inputs for Maha season
• Pests ravage crops as confusion reigns over pesticide policy
‘“Most farmers in our union have reported more than 50 per cent of damage in their plots of paddy lands due to stem borer spread,”: Secretary of the Ooriyan Farmers Federation in Kilinochchi’
• Baur Corporation’s Organic Agri Experts from Switzerland
‘Local EU representative & agriculturist Chandana Hewawasam, GIZ (German Agency for International Cooperation), & Deputy Ambassador from Switzerland, Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) & School of Agricultural, Forest & Food Sciences (HAFL), from A. Baur & Co.’
• Environment Ministry instructs CEA to mark protected boundaries of all rivers
• Corridors a ‘critical’ step to safeguard farmers and wild elephants
‘219 jumbos and 89 people killed so far this year…In 2020, 327 elephant deaths had been reported as against 113 human fatalities’
• National Sandalwood Park at Battaramulla
• Govt. urges use of sea sand from Muthurajawela yard for construction industry
• Garbage dumping in Muthurajawela:
• Kumbuk felling racket despite rumblings of annoyance
• UN Ambassador on Climate Change praises Lanka for initiatives already taken
• England’s COP26 Asia-Pacific and South Asia commends Sri Lanka for renewable energy
‘The Commonwealth Blue Charter championing the Action Group on Mangrove Ecosystems and Livelihoods (MELAG) and 8 other Action Groups… and the Mangrove Caretaker Programme launched with the English High Commission. The Foreign Minister thanked the English Government for assistance through the Blue Planet Fund’s Ocean Country Partnership Programme. The 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in November 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland, and England holds the COP26 Presidency’
• Environmental Foundation Ltd. marks its 40th anniversary
‘EFL founding members are Iranganie Serasinghe, Arjun Gunaratne. Aravinda de Silva, Dilshad Siddique, Thusitha Paranagama, R.L De Alwis, Charles Rohan de Alwis, Ravi Algama and Lalanath de Silva’
• Who is Arinma Holdings, so committed to becoming a partner of the UN Global Compact?
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.
• Top biomedical engineering tech provider exclusive distributor for Japan’s Canon Medical Systems Corp.
• Sri Lanka commences importing oxygen
‘SL can’t fully rely on other countries when importing oxygen: Deputy DG…Govt places orders for Oxygen supplies from India and Singapore’
• Oxygen concentrators developed by Peradeniya Uni mechanical engineers
‘funding for the project from the Korean Maritime and Ocean University at Busan in South Korea.’
• Maximum price set for Antigen and PCR tests
• Every hospital to be converted to treat COVID patients
• Hurriedly produced COVID vaccines not perfect : Tissa Vitharana
‘Sinopharm, Sputnik and Astrazeneca are more effective,”
• Basil stresses import substitution can save forex
‘2 locally manufactured drugs by the State Pharmaceutical Corp (SPC) at Ratmalana Pharmaceutical Corp: painkiller drugs — Tramadol and Levothyroxine – used to treat thyroxin deficiency… $ 88 million can be saved by manufacturing these drugs locally, according to the Government, as about 9.8 million capsules of Tramadol 50 mg and 98 million tablets of 50 mg of levothyroxine are used annually.
“At present only 20% of the drugs used are currently produced locally but the Government hopes to increase it to 50%,”
• Cyber mystery as drug companies’ files go missing from NMRA cloud
‘The National Medicines Regulatory Authority digitisation project was implemented with the Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA). Epic Technology Group, a private sector company, was selected as the service provider after a tender process.’
• Massive financial and man-hour losses due to traffic congestion
• Cabinet nod to establish new LP gas company to State-run Ceylon Petroleum Cooperation
• Gas companies demand Price increase
• Price of gas cylinder increased by Rs. 363
• Presidents, Prime Ministers, Ministers & Bishops cause USD 17 billion losses in energy sector
• Suspension of Laugfs Gas supply: NFF irked by govt. inaction
‘company allowed to discontinue supplies becos its demand for a price increase was not granted.’
• Rural electrification and alleviating energy poverty held a special place in his heart
• Coal ban flouted by big businessman; CEA gives nod despite missing data
• EDB Chief raises concerns over shortage of containers for export shipments
• Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port backed by China’s Sinopec to expand bunkers offering
• Yacht yard at Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port: Namal
‘closely supported by English, European and South African innovators and designers ‘
• Vehicle import ban next year also; strict austerity measures
• Despite rejection of mega projects with foreign loans, English firm to get CEP contract
‘58km section of Central Expressway Project from Kurunegala to Dambulla to M/s Roughton International which will borrow 691.5mn Euros (Rs 162bn) from England’s Export Finance (UKEF).’
• French help for Kandy’s cable car project discussed
• Nuwara Eliya Cable Car project hits financial hurdle
‘costs overruns between the new project proposal of Dopelme Cable Car Company of Austria and its local partner Outdoor Engineering Lanka’
‘• State Trading Corporation to supply foreign helmets to Army; local company protests
• Produce low cost sanitary pads for rural users
• Undo Swindle at Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT) – COPA
• Oshada Senanayake, Chairman, Information & Communication Technology Agency (ICTA)
‘He served as the Director-General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission and continues as a Board Member of SLCERT, Sri Lanka’s apex body for Cyber Security and served as a Board Member of ICTA. He has served in many multinational organizations, including Pyxle, Virtusa, IronOne Technologies, Best Western Elyon, and Keells Business Systems’
• Bracing for biotech boom
‘SL Institute of Biotechnology Park and the Research arm will be in Pitipana, Homagama with the Sri Lanka Institute of Nano Technology (SLINTEC).’
• ICTA & Trace Expert City to Establish a Tier II Technopark in Uva Province
• Govt. to boost boat building and related services
‘Suggests initiating a collaborative effort to build boats and ships with private sector stakeholders, SL Navy and EDB’
• USAID Selects Six Mid-Market Firms for Sri Lanka@100 Advisory Services
• Deathtraps in Colombo
• Overflowing urinals at Wetland Park, Nugegoda
• Afghanistan seeks Sri Lanka’s expertise in gem and jewellery industry
• DIMO Elevator, Escalator and Moving Walk Project of Male’s Velana International Airport
‘with Germany’s TK Elevator (formerly known as Thyssenkrupp)… The main contractor is Saudi Binladin Group with subcontractor China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC)’
• ICCSL streamlines e-Certficate of Origin issuance for exporters
‘The Certificate of Origin issued by International Chamber of Commerce attests that goods in a particular shipment is produced, manufactured or processed in a particular country. …ICC is the world’s largest business organisation representing over 45 million companies in over 130 countries.’
• Competence of embassies key to promoting tourism, exports and investments
‘International Chamber of Commerce SL and the Daily FT in association with SL-China Business Council, the CSE, and the European Chamber of Commerce of SL, organised a webinar…’
• Micro, small and medium-sized businesses in Cuba: A smooth start
• There Is No US Will To Fight Climate Change
‘It was quadruple doomed when the United States under Joe Biden decided that its highest priority and organizing principle of policy was to treat the People’s Republic of China as America’s prime geopolitical adversary.’
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.
• Central Bank introduces single point to handle complaints against financial services providers
‘It receives an “enormous” number of inquiries on a daily basis from the general public on financial matters, the Central Bank said it has made arrangements to introduce the hotline – 1935.’
• Fitch warns Lankan banks’ national ratings constrained by sovereign rating
• Board of Investment seeks private-sector professionals to newly formed specialised unit
‘global FDI pool declining by over 40%, the BOI is competing with over 1000 odd international promotion agencies (IPA)… The BOI has 6 thrust sectors which includes manufacturing, ICT, tourism & hospitality, agri & food processing, infrastructure, and other selected services…’
• Bank of Ceylon 1H pre-tax profit soars by 291% to Rs. 27.1 billion
• Second segment of CSE’s Multi Currency Board soon
‘Colombo Stock Exchange approval from Central Bank to permit local companies intending to go public on the Multi Currency Board to open foreign currency accounts for transactions.’
• England ‘s Commonwealth Development Corp. Group lends $50 million to Commercial Bank
‘SMEs represent 80 per cent of businesses and provide about 35 per cent of jobs in Sri Lanka.’
• Belgium-Sanasa Development Bank’s Rs. 4.5 b SPO crosses halfway mark
‘Last month, SDB Bank agreement with Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries (BIO) for 10% stake for Rs. 925 million via the SPO.’
• Nations Trust Bank loan portfolio increased by LKR 26 billion in 1H
‘NTB raised USD 40 million from FMO, the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank and USD 25 million from World Bank’s International Finance Corp. in H1 to support the Small & Medium sector’
• Sri Lanka’s Asia Securities gets ‘BBB-(lka)’ from Fitch
• Sri Lanka’s Softlogic Stock Brokers get [SL]BBB rating from ICRA
• DFCC Bank’s National Long-Term Rating affirmed by Fitch Ratings at ‘A+(lka)’
• Commercial Bank Rs 1 Trillion mark in dynamic Q2
• Seylan Bank profits up 70 percent to 1.14 billion rupees in the June 2021 quarter
• Sampath Bank profit of Rs 9.5 Bn PBT for the first half of 2021
• Regulating Microfinance (Credits) & Enhancement Of Productivity Of Micro Business 1&2
‘when Dr. N. M. Perera was the minister of Finance there was a Credit Guarantee and Re-finance schemes, later the credit guarantee scheme was abandoned by the Central Bank.’
• Leasing and Loan’ facility for acquiring registered vehicles from Assetline
• Meet Damian Williams, President Biden’s Pick to Prosecute Wall Street
‘For prosecuting serial criminal cases arising out of Wall Street, there are two critical posts: the head of the Criminal Division at the Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York. (The SEC has only civil powers and, thus, conveniently, cannot bring criminal charges.)
• SEC prefers “Alternative Trading System (ATS)” for trading platforms known as Dark Pools
• JPMorgan Chase, largest federally-insured US bank is officially, the riskiest.
• US Fed 36 Years of Money Data Shows a Spike in Repo Loans
• Treasury Secretary Yellen Redacts 73 Meetings or Phone Calls in First 3 Months in Office
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 press releases disguised as ‘news’
• Sri Lanka Tobacco Revenue 30 billion rupees for Q2
• Hemas Holdings revenue Rs.16.4 billion for the quarter ended June 30, 2021,
• Softlogic Life coasts to 9.2 billion GWP in first half with 43% growth
• Aitken Spence records revenue Rs. 8.5 billion in 1Q
• Haycarb June quarter revenue rose 32 percent to 7.4 billion rupees
• Sunshine Holdings records 1Q revenue of Rs. 7.3 billion
• Jaded CSE debut offer for JAT Holdings
‘Joint Financial Advisers & Managers are Capital Alliance Partners and NDB Investment Bank’
• Rapid increase in land prices in Colombo District
‘Considering the diverse nature of land use, and the necessity of maintaining homogeneity, three sub-indicators for residential, commercial and industrial lands are computed separately for each DS division using the average per perch bare land price in the area. The LVI is the simple average of these three sub-indicators.’
– economynext.com/sri-lanka-property-price-disinflation-in-the-capital-colombo-ends-84671/– bizenglish.adaderana.lk/rapid-increase-in-land-prices-in-colombo-district
• Many hotels are up for sale
• Senthilverl halves Printcare stake to 12%
‘Tea industry icon Merrilll J. Fernando controlled MJF Holdings own 27% stake in Printcare whilst K.R. Ravindran holds 21% stake.
• Buhardeen ups Ambeon stake to 10%
‘Buhardeen-owned Almas Organisation & subsidiary Carlines Holdings hold 3.6% stake. Buhardeen also has stakes in Amana Bank, Expolanka Holdings, Laugfs Gas & Power, Malwatte and Kahawatta Plantations, Renuka Holdings, Kalamazoo, Sierra Cables, Kelani Cables, SLT and Singhe Hospitals. Ambeon Capital holds an 81.4% stake in GREG. Ambeon Capital is controlled by CHC Investment of Sanjiv Gardiner and ARRC Capital of Ajit Devasurendra’
• ‘El Dorado’ Gems at the Macan Markar arcade in Galle Face in 1972
• Jetwing and MMBL Pathfinder in a Premier Houseboat Joint venture
• International Chamber of Commerce appoints Dinal Phillips to Int’l Court of Arbitration
‘Phillips is a former Non-Executive Director of National Development Bank’
• SL Institute of Directors goes international, joins Global Network of Director Institutes
• Institute of Directors (SLID) Webinar on Enhancing Effectiveness of the Board Secretary
• ICTA and PwC Partner on New Credit Evaluation Framework to Support Tech Companies
• SL-Greater Mekong Business Council of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce holds 10th AGM
‘S.M.D. Suriyakumara, CEO Maliban Biscuits Manufactories (Pvt) Ltd was elected President, while Mahen Weerasekera, Chairman, Capitol Developers, Kamal Boyagama, Director, MAC Holdings and Randeewa Malalasooriya, Ceylon Biscuits elected as Vice Presidents, and represented by Astron, Aitken Spence Travels, Hayleys Agriculture Holdings, Lanka Hospitals and Rhino Roofing. Ranil Seneviratne, Director, Ranfer International will serve as immediate Past President.
• Dialog partners Ministry of Youth and Sports
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.
• Parliamentary schedule from August 17
• The Hartal, Social Equality and JVP – Nalin de Silva
• The 1977 general election saw influx of anti-social elements into Parliament.
‘Among them were cattle rustlers, killers, hooch and cannabis dealers and extortionists’
• LSSP leaders to pay floral tribute to Dr. N. M. Perera’s statue on August 14 – Vitarana
• Unkind digs at Army jab givers by Ranil
• Radical Centrism: A Recipe for Mediocrity?
‘Sri Lanka is crying out for an ideology of policy positions that might construct a more stable and progressive majority.’
• Liberating Lankan Liberal Democracy – Jayatilleka
• US belligerence is no longer in vogue – David
• Manouri Muttetuwegama: a woman unapologetically herself
• Narrow escape from JVP in 1971
• Remembering Ketheeswaran “Ketheesh” Loganathan
• Justin Wijayawardhana, the first UNP to capture Communist fortress of Matara, in 1960
‘my father started a Sinhala national newspaper, from Matara, titled “Sinhalaya” on 15 April 1940’
• Honor Fallen Black Freedom Fighters: Two Letters on Black August, 1979
• Glen Ford: A Remarkable Revolutionary
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.
• World Bank’s TISL reminds Pres of impending vacancies in Right to Information Commission
• Reservations on where local cinema and tele drama industries are heading
• Cinema industry furious over Film Corp. move to shut out private sector
‘Cinemas came down to 138 from 365 originally, in 2001partially liberalised, NFC’s Ridma, with 60, and four private circuits: Lanka Film Distributors Ltd. (LFD), Cinema Entertainments (CEL), EAP Films and Theatres (EAP) and Movie Producers and Importers (MPIL)… From a net movie collection, producers/film suppliers get 40%, cinema owners 50% and 10% by distributors/circuits. On the gross income 8% goes as entertainment tax for the Government. NFC has issued quotas on the import of films:13 English films, 14 Tamil films, five Hindi and two of other languages’
• Headline based consumption on digital media and how it shapes public opinion
• Sri Lanka govt mulls ways to control websites amid rising online activism
• Kap ceremony signals Kandy perahera beginning
• LTTE Terrorism immediately prior to 1981
• Linkages and breakages: Marxist historiography in Sri Lanka – Deshapriya
‘this advanced civilisation wasn’t just the work of kings: there were significant conjunctures between kings and monks, ruler and ruled, nobility and peasantry, that produced the feats of architecture for which Sri Lanka has gained a reputation today.’
• Recalling a lost landscape of Kompannaveediya
• Journalism has been oft described as the first draft of history
‘The Epidemiology Unit data set also says that the highest concentration of infections is the populous Western Province’
• All the villagers around the Koggala Lake, were ordered to their homes
• Twitter ‘Beholden’ to Govt, Interfering in India’s Political Process, says Rahul Gandhi
• “Greetings! Power to the People!” In the Words of Glen Ford
• Regulation of misinformation should not include criminal penalties – Facebook
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