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Latest News from Sri Lanka: LankaPage wishes its readers a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays... [Last Updated = Tue, Mar 21, 2023, 08:18 pm SL Time]
IMF commends Sri Lanka’s reform program built on strong policy measures

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Board on Monday approved a 48-month extended arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) of SDR 2.286 billion (about US$3 billion) to support Sri Lanka’s economic policies and reforms. Following the approval Sri Lanka will immediately receive an initial disbursement of about US$330 million from the EFF arrangement
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Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- The Wellawaya Police say that four residents of Kattankudi and Akkaraipattu who went to bathe in Ellewela Falls in Wellawaya have gone missing and are presumed to have drowned.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The 18-bend section of the Kandy Mahiyangana road which was hit by a landslide was reopened for traffic this morning (20). Due to heavy rains, a landslide occurred near the second bend of the road yesterday (19) and a landslide also occurred near the 14th bend few days ago.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The Inspector General of Police has ordered the officers of the Criminal Investigation Department not to allow any other party to influence the investigation of notorious drug traffickers Nandun Chinthaka Wickramaratne aka Harak Kata and Salidu Malshika aka Kudu Salindu who are in the custody of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The Police said that around ten houses were completely destroyed after an earth slip in Liyangahawela Kabaragala area of Bandarawela and five people who were buried under the collapsed houses were rescued and taken to the hospital.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- A surveillance team of Indian Coast Guard has arrested six Sri Lankan fishermen on Sunday and their boat seized for allegedly fishing in Indian waters. The surveillance team members, who were on duty on the ICGS Adhesh, spotted the fishermen engaged in fishing in Indian waters

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- A search operation conducted by the Navy in Kolombuthurei beach, Jaffna yesterday (March 17) led to the discovery of 28 Water Gel Sticks - a type of commercial explosive.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- Minister of Justice Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe said that a law is being drafted to keep detainees under house arrest instead of incarceration. The Minister said the relevant draft is currently being prepared, and that this law will be introduced with the aim of reducing prison overcrowding and the emergence of serious criminals.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- Colombo Fort Magistrate Thilina Gamage Friday ordered the Director of Lady Ridgeway Children’s Hospital, Colombo to hand over the newborn who was left in the toilet of the Meenagaya train back to the parents.

Mar 17 (CP) Colombo- Wanted criminal Ravindu Sanka de Silva alias ‘Booru Moona’, who was involved in several murders and escaped while in the custody of the Katunayake airport police, has been arrested by the police. He was arrested in Avissawella area while coming to surrender to the Avissawella court.

Mar 17 (CP) Colombo- The officers of the Special Investigation Unit of the Sri Lanka Foreign Employment Bureau have arrested two men who swindled money from people by claiming to provide foreign jobs. A person from Pallama area who swindled money by saying that he would provide jobs in Kuwait was arrested recently (15) in Maradana area.



Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- Recovering from the challenging situation that the country is currently facing, requires a significant emphasis on the accountability of public officials in matters such as financial control, anti-corruption measures, and adherence to the rule of law, pointed out Mr. Sagala Ratnayake, the Senior Adviser to the President on National Security and Chief of the Presidential Staff.

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka’s nationwide inflation in February 2023 determined under the National Consumer Price Index (NCPI) marginally increased to 53.6 percent from 53.2 percent recorded in January 2023 on a year-on-year basis, the Department of Census and Statistics reported Tuesday.

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- In a special statement following the approval of the extended credit facility by the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), President Ranil Wickremesinghe emphasized that Sri Lanka is no longer deemed bankrupt by the world.

Mar 20 (CP) Washington, DC- The Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved today a 48‑month extended arrangement under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) with an amount of SDR 2.286 billion (395 percent of quota or about US$3 billion).

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The United States Ambassador to Sri Lanka Julie Chung Monday announced the recent arrival of 770 metric tons (MT) of fortified rice and 100 MT of fortified vegetable oil through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) “McGovern-Dole Food for Education Program.”

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The official term of office of 340 out of 341 local government bodies except for Elpitiya Pradeshiya Sabha (PS) ended at midnight Sunday, March 19 and the authority of those institutions will be transferred to Commissioners and Secretaries.


Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- Suren Cooke Agencies, the pioneer in the Pest Management industry of Sri Lanka, in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Sub-Aqua Club (SLSAC) and Neptune’s Army of Rubbish Cleaners (NARC), recently conducted an ocean clean-up in Mount Lavinia.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The Central Bank of Sri Lanka has informed the public about prohibited pyramid schemes through a special newspaper advertisement. The Central Bank has received a large number of public complaints that prohibited schemes are being implemented in violation of Section 83c of the Banking Act No. 30 of 1988.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- Jaya Container Terminals Limited (JCT Limited), a fully owned subsidiary of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA), has seen phenomenal growth and turnover in the recent past, despite the fuel crisis that prevailed in Sri Lanka.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- Last week, the largest capacity crawler crane in Sri Lanka was unloaded at Hambantota International Port. The crane, with a 750-ton lifting capacity, will be initially used for Hiruras Wind Power Project in Mannar.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- IODEX, one of the leading specialists in pain relief, conducted a 17-day social welfare program from 03rd to 19th March 2023 where thousands of pilgrims and devotees were given relief by reducing the physical pains they would face while making the arduous trek to the summit of Sri Pada.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- Marking Global Recycling Day, Nestlé Lanka announced its collaboration with Chakra Suthra – a start-up focused on innovating solutions towards a zero-waste future. Accordingly, the ‘Good food, Good life’ company’s signature brand Nestlé Milo will be the exclusive category partner for aseptic beverage cartons for Chakra Suthra’s smart recycling bin ‘Trash2Cash’,

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- Premier hospitality chain, Aitken Spence Hotel Managements’ Heritance brand of properties has been endorsed for its sustainable tourism efforts by the prestigious international recognition - Travelife Gold. Heritance Kandalama, Heritance Ahungalla, Heritance Negombo, Heritance Tea Factory and Heritance Ayurveda have been recognized

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) once again extended the partnership agreement to CFA Society Sri Lanka as a Platinum Partner for the 7th consecutive year in a bid to broaden its collaborative and industrial reach.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- H One, the leading Microsoft Solutions Provider in Maldives and Sri Lanka, has announced its partnership with Dhiraagu, the premier telecommunications and digital services provider in the Maldives.

Mar 17 (CP) Colombo- The second round of the Investor Facilitation Coordinating Committee Meeting chaired by State Minister of Investment Promotion Dilum Amunugama concluded recently at the Investor Facilitation Centre (IFC), where the State Minister stepped in to iron out concerns raised by investors pertaining to seeking approvals for investment projects.

Mar 17 (CP) Colombo- All the heads of government corporations and departments have informed the Ministry of Finance that they will immediately transfer the existing accounts at the People’s Bank to other banks.

Mar 17 (CP) Colombo- AkzoNobel Paints Lanka, one of the world’s largest paint and coatings company, has introduced a series of new initiatives to help motivate and support its Dulux painter community in Sri Lanka, while concurrently launching its own digital innovations for customer empowerment.

Mar 20 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed higher for a fifth straight session on Monday, helped by gains in financials and consumer staples stocks. The CSE All-Share index rose 0.31% to 9699.96.

Mar 20 (Bloomberg) -- Investors are betting that Sri Lanka will win final approval for about $2.9 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund on Monday, a key step for the bankrupt nation to revive its economy from the worst crisis in decades.

Mar 17 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed higher for a fourth week on Friday, helped by gains in financials and consumer staples stocks. The CSE All-Share index rose 0.77% to 9,670.42.



Mar 21, Colombo: The Rules under the Council of Legal Education Ordinance (Chapter 276) inclusive of the decision taken by the Council of Legal Education to make the mandatory medium of examination of the Sri Lanka Law College English, was voted against by the House today (Mar. 21).

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- The credit facility approved by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to Sri Lanka is an important step to take Sri Lanka’s economy back to the right direction, says Julie Chang, the U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka.

Mar 21 (Reuters) - When Ranil Wickremesinghe took over as Sri Lanka’s president in July after a popular uprising ousted his predecessor, the South Asian island nation was engulfed in its worst economic meltdown in 75 years.

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- The International Monetary Fund announced at the press conference held today to announce the Executive Board’s decision to approve the US$ 3 billion Fund Facility that it will not have any influence on the election process in Sri Lanka.

Mar 21, (CP) Colombo- The British Council in Sri Lanka hosted an interactive briefing for UK education agents and school counsellors on March 13 at the Movenpick Hotel in Colombo. The well-attended event saw attendees being introduced to the newly revamped British Council UK agent and counsellor engagement platform

Mar 21 (CP) Colombo- Minister of Transport, Highways and Mass Media and Cabinet Spokesman Dr. Bandula Gunawardena said that the Cabinet of Ministers yesterday evening granted authority to Finance, Economic Stabilization and National Policies Ministry Secretary or the Deputy Treasury Secretary to sign the promissory note and all other documents required to obtain the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) of US$ 2.9 billion from the International Monetary Fund on behalf of the Government.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe has welcomed the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Board’s approval granted for the Sri Lanka’s program under the Extended Fund Facility (EFF).

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The distribution of the stock of 36,000 metric tons of Triple Super Phosphate (TSP) Fertilizer or Mud fertilizer received by Sri Lanka from the USAID to the paddy farmers free of charge commenced today (20).

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- A Japanese delegation arrived the island for an exploratory tour of Sri Lanka’s tourism industry has announced that steps will be taken to carry out many promotional programs about the Sri Lankan tourism industry in Japan In the next few months.

Mar 20 (CP) Colombo- The Inland Revenue Department has decided to receive personal income tax records only through online starting from the tax year 2023-2024, which begins from April 1.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- It has been decided to get public opinions and suggestions to prepare a new constitution for the United National Party (UNP). The UNP announced that a committee was appointed in the working committee to draft a new constitution for party and it will take suggestions from the public as per the decision of the committee.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- A senior official of Ceylon Electricity Board said that the 3rd generator of Norochcholai Coal Power Plant broke down this morning (19). The Ceylon Electricity Board has informed the Minister of Power and Energy Kanchana Wijesekera of the issue.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- The Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena said that with the approval granted by the International Monetary Fund for the agreement by next week, the doors of our economy will be opened again to the international community.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- President Ranil Wickremesinghe emphasized that the Royal College cricket team’s effective captaincy ultimately led to the team’s victory at a time when all of the matches were being lost and that his effort is to lift the defeated country to the path of victory similar to what the captain of the Royal College cricket team did.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- More than a million Sri Lankan paddy farmers in all 25 districts will get vital assistance through a shipment of over 36,000 metric tons of fertilizer handed over today by the United States to the Ministry of Agriculture.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- President Ranil Wickremesinghe has ordered the dissolution of the Teacher Transfer Board of the Ministry of Education with immediate effect. Accordingly, all the transfers of around 12,500 teachers that were to be implemented based on the recommendations of the Teacher Transfer Board will be cancelled.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- The term of office of 344 local authorities will end at midnight on Sunday 19th March and their powers will be placed under the Commissioners from that day. Accordingly, the official vehicles given to the mayors and chairmen of those institutions should be returned.

Mar 19 (CP) Colombo- Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena inspected the final phase of the construction work of the UMA Oya Project on Saturday (March 18). Uma Oya Multipurpose Project, which is one of the largest projects, is expected to improve irrigation of 5000 acres of barren agricultural lands in several districts and generate 290 GW/h power in a year.

Mar 19 (Nikkei Asian) Sri Lanka is counting the minutes to Monday, when the International Monetary Fund’s executive board is expected to approve a $2.9 billion bailout for the bankrupt island nation.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- The 144th ‘Battle of the Blues’ between Royal College, Colombo, and St. Thomas College, Mount Lavinia concluded with a victory for Royal College, Colombo. The award ceremony took place this afternoon (18th) and was presided over by the Alumni President of Royal College Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- Minister of Health Dr. Keheliya Rambukwella says that the procurement process in the health sector in Sri Lanka has been made more efficient with high transparency. The Minister said the program for that is currently being successfully implemented in the relevant institutions and high efficiency in the health sector can be expected in the future.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- The government has decided to resume granting interest-free loans in the amount of Rs. 800,000 to the students who fail to get admission in the government universities after passing the GCE Advanced Level to pursue higher education courses.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) in a letter to the President Ranil Wickremesinghe requested the head of the state to make “best possible” appointment to head the country’s police force.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- The Ministry of Education has released over Rs. 814 million to the provincial education departments for the implementation of the midday school meal program for the month of January 2023.

Mar 18 (CP) Colombo- The Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena says the trade union actions are undermining the workers’ rights, their right to organize as unions and their bargaining power when they make vengeful demands. The Prime Minister in his speech further mentioned that in order to overcome the most serious crisis that the country has faced, the government faced two major problems recently.

* ‘Blood thicker than water’: Jaishankar on India stepping in to help during Sri Lankan economic crisis (18 - News18)
* Lankan envoy stresses more people-to-people contacts (18 - ITN)
* World Bank’s support for the modernization of Sri Lanka’s agricultural sector extended (17 - CP)
* Agriculture Minister attends ‘Global Millets Conference’ in New Delhi (17 - CP)
* Veteran artists felicitated at ‘Satarawa Deepani’ ceremony (17 - CP)
* State Vesak festival this year in Puttalam (17 - CP)
* Ways to increase job opportunities for Sri Lankans in Jordan discussed (17 - CP)
* No recognition of political parties if failed to submit audited accounts for 2021 within 14 days, EC warns (17 - CP)
* Draft Anti-Corruption Bill to be forwarded to the Attorney General’s Department today (17 - CP)


Mar 20 (ESPNCI) It took until the final thirty minutes of the final session on the fourth day, and a marathon 142 overs in the field - over 200 if you count the overs in the first innings Sri Lanka followed on from - but New Zealand eventually broke through Sri Lanka’s defiant rearguard to secure an innings-and-58-run victory

Mar 20 (ESPNCI) Dimuth Karunaratne wants to step down as Test captain after the Ireland Tests next month. It is an ongoing conversation with the Sri Lanka selectors, who have not accepted his resignation yet. But after four years in the job, and with a fresh World Test Championship (WTC) cycle looming,

Mar 19 (AFP) Sri Lanka face a mountainous task to avoid defeat in the second Test against New Zealand after collapsing for 164 in their first innings on Sunday and being forced to follow-on. The tourists were 12 without loss in their second innings at tea on day three, still trailing by 404 runs

Mar 17 (ESPNCI) The immensely blustery conditions at the Basin Reserve were likely the cause of the Sri Lanka seamers’ wayward lines and lengths on the opening day of the second Test in Wellington. Both the day’s top-scorer Devon Conway and Sri Lanka’s fast bowling coach Dharshana Gamage agreed on this point


Mar 21 (BBC) Police in major US cities are preparing for potential unrest in case ex-President Donald Trump is arrested this week as part of a hush-money inquiry. Authorities in New York, Washington DC and Los Angeles are ramping up their law enforcement presence.

Mar 21 (BBC) Saudi Arabia has released a US citizen from prison more than a year on from his conviction over tweets critical of the government. Saad Ibrahim Almadi, 72, who also has Saudi citizenship, was arrested in November 2021 when he arrived in Riyadh to visit his family.

Mar 20 (BBC) A South African accountant who was investigating high-level corruption cases has been shot dead along with his son. Cloete Murray, 50, was the liquidator for Bosasa, a company implicated in numerous government contract scandals. He also worked as a liquidator for firms

Mar 19 (Reuters) - Pakistani police on Saturday entered the property in Lahore of former Prime Minister Imran Khan, officials from his political party said, as he was arriving in the capital Islamabad for a court appearance.

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

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

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

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

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

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