It is not just the garment sector workers who are worried. The over 100,000 workers in tea estates, another vital, foreign exchange- earning sector, are faced with heightened poverty and uncertainty since the pandemic hit. “In January, just ahead of Pongal festival, President Rajapaksa promised to raise their wages to LKR 1,000 a day (roughly ₹400). The demand for 1,000 rupees is now five years old and it is yet to be met. The pandemic has meant fewer days of work and even lesser wages [than the 700 they currently get],” said C. Ganesalingam, convenor of the Movement for Plantation People’s Land Rights. Further, with many hill country youth employed in capital Colombo losing their jobs and returning to the estates, the number of people to feed in each family has increased. “Some families tell us that they have two instead of three meals a day.” … [Read more...] about Sri Lanka to unveil crucial budget today amid virus
While he made no direct reference to the RCEP that was signed just days prior to his speech, his message reiterated the President Gotabaya Rajapaksa administration’s stated trade vision, as well as former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s passionate argument that Sri Lanka needed to turn more eastward in its economic and trade diplomacy. While it is unclear if the Sri Lankan government is considering seeking RCEP membership, Colombo seems open to the idea. … [Read more...] about Analysis | What are Sri Lanka’s prospects with RCEP sans India?
Former South Africa batsman Herschelle Gibbs has revealed how his scheduled commentary stint for the Lanka Premier League fell off track. Gibbs was named one of the six commentators designated for the inaugural edition of the LPL but the former SA batsman, on social media, revealed that the development was in fact ‘news to him’. … [Read more...] about ‘They kept me waiting for 3 weeks’: Controversy erupts over Herschelle Gibbs’ commentary gig
Gupkar alliance rocky as partners field candidates against one anotherFissures within the People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD), an amalgam of seven political parties, came starkly to the fore on Monday as the Congress fielded candidates against the alliance partner Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on many seats for the upcoming District Development Council (DDC) polls. … [Read more...] about Morning digest | Parliament winter session unlikely due to COVID-19, Gupkar alliance rocky as partners field candidates against one another, and more
Reading his budget proposal in the Parliament, the Prime Minister said the government aimed to create a strong nation by exploiting the development opportunities that arose as a central hub, in the new economic order of the world, to both the conventional western advanced economies and the powerful emerging eastern economies. … [Read more...] about Sri Lankan PM unveils government’s maiden budget proposals for 2021