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[Last Updated = Wed, Jan 28, 2015, 01:11 am SL Time]
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No change in Sri Lanka's liberal market policies with India, Minister assures

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- There is no change whatsoever in Sri Lanka's international or domestic trade positioning due to the arrival of new government, rather, it stands strengthened even more Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen assured today. "We pledge that there is no change in Sri Lanka's liberal market policies by the new government of HE the President Maithripala Sirisena-rather, our determined market economy outlook is strengthened even further by HE the President's new policies," he said.
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SECURITY - SITUATION

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- The Appeal Court of Sri Lanka today issued notice on the Attorney General to appear before the Court on February 5 in connection with the writ application filed by the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) against former LTTE Leader, Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP.

** Related Story ::Sri Lanka Appeal Court to take up petition against former LTTE leader on Tuesday

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- A Sri Lankan court today ordered the police to probe the bank accounts of former ruling party parliamentarian who is suspected of drug peddling in the country. The Colombo Magistrate's Court today issued a directive to the police to investigate accounts maintained by Colombo District United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) MP Duminda Silva at several banks and financial institutions.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Missing Sri Lankan journalist, Prageeth Eknaligoda's wife, Sandhya Eknaligoda has requested for a meeting with President Maithripala Sirisena to discuss the case about her husband who has been missing since January 2010.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Former Sri Lankan minister Wimal Weerawansa's wife, Shashi Weerawansa is under probe for allegedly providing false information to get a diplomatic passport. Police have said the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) has commenced an investigation into the controversial diplomatic passport obtained by Shashi Weerawansa by allegedly producing false information.

Jan 27 (Island) CID investigations into the dealings of drug kingpin 'Wele Suda' allegedly had with a former IGP have revealed that the drug baron gifted the top police officer a new palatial bungalow at Kelanimulla, Kelaniya.

Jan 27 (DM) At least 31 persons were injured following a head-on collision involving two buses in Pahala Naragala Wedage Watta junction on the Horana - Bulathsinhala Road this evening, Police said.

Jan 27 (DN) The Judicial Service Association is greatly concerned with the investigation that has been initiated by the Criminal Investigations Department pursuant to a complaint made to it alleging the presence of the Chief Justice at Temple Trees at a time when there was an alleged discussion to make the former President to continue in office regardless of the results of the polls conduced on January 8, 2015,states

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- The Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption (CIABOC) of Sri Lanka has imposed a three month overseas travel ban on former Sports Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage preventing him from leaving the country.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- A Sri Lankan court today summoned several deputy minister sand parliamentarians of the former ruling party over the assault on an opposition party mayor during a provincial council election.

** Related Story ::Sri Lanka Police to arrest two former deputy ministers and a MP for assaulting UNP members

Jan 26, Colombo- Wife of former Deputy Inspector General of Sri Lanka Vass Gunawardena today lodged a complaint with the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption against members of the former government including former First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's Marxist party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) is to hand over a complaint to the Defense Secretary today against former President Mahinda Rajapaksa's son, Navy officer Yoshitha Rajapaksa. The complaint is to be handed over this morning.

More : SECURITY - SITUATION
* Govt. to tackle deaths in police, judicial custody (26 - Island)
* Child falls to death from apartment building (26 - DN)
More : SECURITY - SITUATION

NEWS - HIGHLIGHTS

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- All ranks, privileges and pension have been restored for the former Army Commander of Sri Lanka Sarath Fonseka following the full Presidential amnesty granted to him by the Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena, the Army said today.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- The UK Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office Hugo Swire is paying a second visit to Sri Lanka from 28-30 January, shortly after the formation of a new government, the UK High Commission in Colombo said in a release today.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo: Sri Lanka's Central Bank has decided to maintain current policy interest rates as inflationary pressures remain low and economy grew by 7.7 percent during the third quarter of 2014.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- In an exceptional move to strengthen the relationship between the two neighboring countries, leaders of Sri Lanka and India will visit each other's country back to back in the next two months.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- After an inspection tour of the multi-purpose Moragahakanda Irrigation Project Monday, Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena expressed satisfaction at the progress in the construction of country's largest irrigation system and assured that it will be completed as scheduled.


FINANCE

Jan 27 (CP) McLean, VA- CYREN, a leading provider of cloud-based security solutions today announced that it signed Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) as one of its latest resellers. SLT will now offer the cloud-based CYREN WebSecurity solution that provides advanced cybersecurity and zero-hour threat protection, the Virginia-based company said in a press release today.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Newly appointed Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka Mr. Arjuna Mahendran assumed duties in his new post on Monday, the 26th of January 2015 at the Governor's office in Colombo, the bank said in a media release.

Jan 27 (Reuters) Sri Lanka can reduce its policy interest rates below their current record low levels once inflationary expectations subside and become stable, new Central Bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran said on Tuesday.

Jan 27 (Reuters) Sri Lankan shares hit a more than one-week closing high on Tuesday after the central bank kept key policy rates steady at record lows without any tightening measures amid foreign outflows, while investors waited for clarity from a supplementary budget later this week.

Jan 27 (Reuters) Sri Lankan rupee forwards traded weaker on Tuesday on importer dollar demand while the market awaited clarity on the new government's economic policies and exporters remained on the sidelines amid fears of depreciation.

Jan 27 (Bloomberg) Sri Lanka’s monetary policy has been “veering toward the looser side,” new central bank Governor Arjuna Mahendran said on Tuesday as he left interest rates unchanged amid inflation that’s near a five-year low.

Jan 27 (Island) First Capital Treasuries Limited has announced that it intends to issue Subordinated, Unsecured, Redeemable Debentures with a principal value of LKR. 500 million maturing in Five Years and bearing an interest rate of 9.5% per annum payable annually.

Jan 27 (DM) A local stockbroking firm with a foreign partner said in a report that the appointment of Thilak Karunaratne as the new Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will be beneficial for the country’s capital market in the longer run.

Jan 27 (DN) Laksala has recorded a 25% year-on-year growth. The supplier base too has continuously increased and recorded over 8,000 craftsmen in 2014 from various parts of the country.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- The new Chairman of Sri Lanka's national carrier, SriLankan Airlines, Ajith Dias assumed duties Monday in the presence of Minister of Ports and Shipping, Arjuna Ranatunga and State Minister of Aviation, Faizer Mustapha, at the SriLankan Airlines Office in Colombo.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- Japan's JFE Engineering Monday announced that it has received an order for the design and construction of a wastewater treatment plant and treated effluent disposal system in Sri Lanka's central hill capital of Kandy.

More : FINANCE
* Sri Lanka shares rebound from 1-mth low close ahead of monetary policy (26 - Reuters)
* Sri Lanka rupee forwards end weaker on importer dlr demand; seen falling (26 - Reuters)
* POLL-Sri Lanka cbank seen tightening by removing lower repo penalty rate (26 - Reuters)
* Jetwing Air represents Air China in Sri Lanka (26 - CP)
* Sri Lankan rupee tad weaker on importer dlr demand, stocks up (26 - Reuters)
* SL to tap US technologies and its export market further (26 - Island)
* 'Holidays on Tea' - Channel News Asia reviews Heritance Tea Factory (26 - DM)
* Easing of travel ban boost to Northern trade (26 - DN)
* Sri Lanka’s forex reserves down to US$8.3bn: Central bank (26 - LBO)
More : FINANCE

POLITICS - GENERAL

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Former Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa says a media blitz has been launched to "vilify" him and mislead the public instead of following established procedures to probe wrongdoing.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- New Governors appointed to six provinces in Sri Lanka took oaths before Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat today. New Governors were appointed to Northern, Eastern, Sabaragamuwa, Central, North-Central and Uva Provinces following the change in the government after January 8 presidential elections.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Senior Journalist Dharmasri Bandara Ekanayake has been appointed President's Media Director. He received his Letter of Appointment from President Maithripala Sirisena today (27) at the Presidential Secretariat.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- Lawyers and civil society representatives in Sri Lanka are to commence a continuous agitation campaign tomorrow demanding the resignation of Chief Justice Mohan Peiris. The Lawyers' Collective and the civil society are scheduled to commence the protest tomorrow at 8.30 a.m. outside the Supreme Court complex in Hultsdorf.

Jan 27 (CP) Colombo- President of Sri Lanka Maithripala Sirisena says the country's corrupt tender procedure needs to be changed. Addressing a gathering of state sector officials in Polonnaruwa, Sirisena said the state officials have the responsibility of carrying the country forward.

Jan 27 (NIE) COLOMBO- Former Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has slammed the on-going media blitz against him and has charged that the vilification campaign is meant to mislead the public.

Jan 27 (Xinhua) Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has extended an open invitation to all political parties to support his 100 day plan for the country. Speaking at an event held to commemorate his victory on Monday at the recent presidential elections, Sirisena said that he has no intention of taking revenge on anyone who voted against him at the election.

Jan 27 (Island) President Maithripala Sirisena on Sunday strongly denied his predecessor Mahinda Rajapaksa’s claim that his residence had been searched by the police since the conclusion of the presidential poll.

Jan 27 (DM) While denying allegation that his mother was involved in a gold racket, MP Namal Rajapaksa said yesterday that if anyone wanted to take revenge politically they should only attack his father or himself and not the other members of his family.

Jan 27 (DN) President Maithripala Sirisena on Sunday said that the term of office of the President of Sri Lanka will be reduced to five years from the original six . “I had insisted that the terms of the Presidency be reduced to four years though the Committee of Constitutional Experts and political leaders did not agree with my demand,” the President added.

Jan 26 (CP) Polonnaruwa- In keeping with the promise he made during his election campaign, the Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena today began to provide the financial support for the kidney patients in the country.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- Sri Lanka's new Minister of Education Akila Viraj Kariyawasam today outlined the measures the government will be taken to improve the country's education system.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- India said today that it is ready to work with the new government of Sri Lanka to take the bilateral relationship between the two nations to the next level and stands ready to continue to provide support and partnership to the closest neighbor in realizing its people's aspirations.

Jan 26 (CP) Colombo- The High Commission of India and the Indian expatriate community in Sri Lanka celebrated the 66th Republic Day of India on Monday, January 26, 2015 at India House in Colombo. High Commissioner Mr. Y.K. Sinha unfurled the Indian flag and inspected a Guard of Honour presented by a contingent of the Border Security Force.

Jan 26 (DNA) Sri Lanka's newly elected President Maithripala Sirisena has said that there was a "plan" to deny him victory by his predecessor even after the results showed that he had won the January 8 Presidential election.

Jan 26 (NIE) COLOMBO- Breaking tradition, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will be the Chief Guest at the Indian Republic Day reception at India House here Monday evening.

More : POLITICS - GENERAL
* Sri Lanka’s media needs reform - can new President Sirisena deliver? (26 - Xindex)
* PM to submit report on how to counter UNHRC allegations (26 - Island)
* Dissolution of Parliament would prevent implementation of promises - President (26 - DN)
* Sri Lankan President to inspect the Moragahakanda irrigation project today (26 - CP)
* No need for new commissions on national issue, Sri Lanka Tamil party says (26 - CP)
* Sri Lankan Minister says executive powers of the presidency will be slashed in February (26 - CP)
More : POLITICS - GENERAL

SPORTS

Jan 27 (BBC) Pakistan all-rounder Haris Sohail was left "visibly shaken" and unable to train after an apparent ghostly encounter in a New Zealand hotel room. Sohail, 26, says "a supernatural presence" woke him up by shaking his bed, forcing him to seek refuge in the room of a team coach. The incident allegedly took place at Rydges Latimer in Christchurch

More : SPORTS

Jan 27 (NZC) New Zealand allrounder Corey Anderson reckons he will have an advisory role to play if Sri Lanka unleash pace bowling trump card Lasith Malinga in the World Cup opener. Malinga's steady recovery from ankle surgery in September has ruled him out of this month's seven-match one-day international series which concludes in Wellington on Thursday. Team management have indicated the 31-year-old speedster is increasing his training workload and will be fit for World Cup warm-up games,

Jan 27 (ESPNCI) Rangana Herath will be unavailable for the seventh ODI against New Zealand on Thursday, as he returns home to help care for an unwell family member, Sri Lanka's team manager has said. Herath will leave the team immediately, but is scheduled to return to New Zealand on around February 3, well ahead of Sri Lanka's first World Cup warm-up match against South Africa on February 9.

Jan 27 (SL) Chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya concedes Sri Lanka must improve in all areas ahead of the Cricket World Cup. Sri Lanka's chief selector Sanath Jayasuriya has challenged all-rounders Jeevan Mendis and Thisara Perera to show more against New Zealand on Thursday as they look towards the Cricket World Cup, starting in February.


WORLD

Jan 27 (BBC) The Indonesian military has suspended the recovery operation for AirAsia flight QZ8501, which crashed into the Java Sea in December. Search teams failed to retrieve the fuselage after three days of attempts using a lifting bag.

More : WORLD

Jan 27 (IANS) Another case, for "instigating arson", has been filed against former Bangladesh prime minister Khaleda Zia, who had called a nationwide transport blockade earlier this month, a media report said Tuesday. Police booked her as the "hukumer asami", someone responsible for "instigation and conspiracy", over torching of a covered van at Chouddagram in Comilla district, 100 km away from Dhaka, bdnews24.com reported.

Jan 27 (BBC) US President Barack Obama has addressed a town hall-style meeting with young people in Delhi on the final day of his visit to India. The US can become India's "best partner", Mr Obama told the gathering of university students and activists.

Jan 27 (BBC) Indonesia's president has said he will not compromise over death sentences given to convicted drug traffickers, despite international outcry. Joko Widodo made the comments in an interview with CNN to mark his first 100 days in power.


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

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

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

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

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

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