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‘SL’s SME sector hit by multiple issues; businesses can no longer plan for the future’

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By Hiran H.Senewiratne

The SME sector which contributed more than 80 per cent to the national economy has been affected by multiple issues, such as the power crisis, energy shortage, high inflation and many other external factors, National People’s Power MP Dr. Harini Amarasuriya said.

“In the current situation, all the business sectors, especially the SME sector, could no longer plan for the future, which is by and large a tragedy, Amarasuriya said while participating as Guest Speaker at a Rotary Club of Colombo South/Central/Wattala joint member meeting held at Galadari Hotel on Tuesday.

Amarasuriya added: “Incompetent leaders should be held responsible for the Sri Lankan economic downturn and those leaders did not take proper decisions right from the beginning. That is why we see people in queues to purchase fuel, gas and other essential items.

” When Sri Lanka graduated to middle- income country status in 2008 our donor agencies were reluctant to grant loans to our country. Therefore, we were compelled to take loans at commercial rates, bilateral agreements and through international sovereign bonds.

‘”Raising funds through International sovereign bonds is extremely risky in terms of speculation. Therefore, those instruments are unconditional in nature and sometimes may result in our incurring losses.

“The funds that they raised from international sovereign bonds, the government invested in development projects and those projects did not provide the expected return on investment due to corruption, wastage and high expenditure cost.

“Another main reason for the present crisis is that when this government came to power in 2019, they came up with a huge tax reduction, in which the government lost more than Rs 500 billion to Rs 600 billion annually.

“Further, the government also increased the tax threshold, which was the highest in the region and many taxpayers were able to evade tax payments. Due to that, indirect tax revenue incurred heavy losses.

“The loopholes in the tax system and most corrupt tax collecting entities, such as the Inland Revenue Department and the Sri Lanka Customs, have created deep trouble for the Sri Lanka economy. Those two entities need to be revived and revamped to reap real economic benefits for the country.

“The government’s decision to switch the agriculture sector to organic fertilizer from chemical fertilizer is a failure. This is normally a long process.

“Nowhere in the world do we see countries switching to 100 per cent organic fertilizer, which has to done after considering many factors.”



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Wing Commander (Retd.) D. Pradeep S. Kannangara elected president, Industrial Security Foundation

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The Industrial Security Foundation (ISF) which acts as the sole organization in Sri Lanka to represent the Private Security industry having incorporated by an Act passed in the Parliament, Act No. 51 of 1999, elected Wing Commander (Retd.) Pradeep Kannangara as its President for the years 2022/2023 at its 30th annual General Meeting which was held at the PIM Auditorium in Borella. Wing Commander Pradeep Kannangara was appointed President while 14 other members were appointed to the Executive Committee, strengthening the ISF in order to drive and uplift the standards of the private security industry in Sri Lanka.

He has served on the ExCo consecutively since 2012 under four different presidents where he held the positions of Senior Vice President during the last three consecutive years. He has also been a committed member of the ISF and was awarded prestigious coveted FISF title due to his many valuable contributions to the organization and the Private Security Industry in Sri Lanka in 2012.

Wing Commander Kannangara’s journey into private security began after a successful career in the Sri Lanka Air Force for over 24 years where he served in many capacities finally being the Officer Commanding of the Special Air Borne Force. A recipient of the Ranasura Padakkama (RSP) Gallantry award for his bravery, sacrifices and service to the nation by the President of the Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka in 1990. He holds a Master’s in business management from the Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia too and serves as a Board Director in AB Securitas (Private) Limited in Sri Lanka and AB Securitas Bangladesh Limited.

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Kitchen & Bedroom reaffirms its partnership with Häfele Sri Lanka

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(L-R) Pawan Singh- General Manager Sales & Marketing at Hafele Sri Lanka, Jurgen Wolf- Managing Director Hafele South Asia, Dr. Sacquaff- Group CEO Kitchen & Bedroom, and Manish Mahajan, Director Sales Hafele South Asia

Kitchen & Bedroom, a name synonymous in the interior designing and furniture sector in the country recently celebrated its long-standing partnership with Häfele Sri Lanka during the latter’s 12th year anniversary celebratory event, reaffirming its ambitious plans to further strengthen and explore the numerous opportunities available here.

Häfele Sri Lanka, part of Häfele India which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Hafele Global network, is a technology partner for various projects and initiatives of Kitchen & Bedroom. Both the companies operate in the interior design space, sharing their cumulative knowledge and expertise to provide extensive and personalized solutions catering to domestic requirements.

‘We take great pride in our association with Häfele Sri Lanka having exchanged and collaborated on many projects both commercial and household. We share similar values such as providing high quality, sustainable, functional and customized solutions to our customers, and most importantly to guide them through every aspect and step of the project and how best we could bring out their desired design,’ said Dr. Sacquaff, Kitchen & Bedroom Group CEO.

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DSI strengthens its islandwide presence with three new showrooms

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Amid the prevailing economic hardships faced by Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka’s premier footwear brand DSI recently expanded its islandwide presence in the country with the opening of three new showrooms in Kahawatta, Akuressa, and Chavakachcheri, with the aim of offering greater access to its diversified product range to a wider customer base.

Gracing the special occasion, the showrooms were declared open by D. Samson & Sons (Pvt.) Ltd. Managing Director Thusitha Rajapaksa, in the presence of Director Asanka Rajapaksa, General Manager Pradeep Samarathunga, National Sales Manager – Retail Sales Naleen Weerawardana, invitees, and well-wishers.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Thusitha Rajapaksa stated: “We are excited about expanding DSI wings to three new locations. Despite the ongoing economic conditions of the country, we took a call to take a proactive measure to expand our islandwide presence. While it has been a challenge, the commitment and hard work of our team has made it possible to serve our loyal customers better, and we are confident that we will be able to continue these efforts in the future as well.”

DSI is renowned for its well-trained staff who offer exceptional customer service. The three new DSI showrooms prioritize providing a unique service and customer support to make purchasing further convenient for the customer.

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