20 June, 2024

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Recovery, Growth & Toxic Imports

By Ameer Ali

Dr. Ameer Ali

The disaster that occurred on 26 March at Baltimore Bridge USA, when a Singapore cargo ship chartered by Maersk hit that bridge and made it collapse, has virtually disappeared from local news media after a brief appearance over a few days. But it was an accident that once again reminds the world particularly developing countries like Sri Lanka the ugly side of industrial capitalism that brings to light an undesirable route to restore Sri Lanka’s bankrupt economy with financial assistance and advice from IMF. This particular cargo vessel was reported to be carrying a total of 4644 containers of which 56 had been loaded with 764 tons of hazardous materials – mostly corrosives and inflammables – which were destined to be unloaded in Colombo. Who imported those materials and for what purpose and who exported them are unclear. However, according to Daily Mirror (9 April 2024), the US International Development Finance Corporation had promised to invest $553 million for the development of Adani’s West Container Terminal project in Colombo, which is to be jointly built by Sri Lanka Port Authority and John Keels. It is left to the readers to reach their own conclusion about who must have imported the hazardous materials, for what purpose and under what conditions. Is this the first of such imports or were there others previously? If Sri Lanka has a contract to import hazardous industrial waste either to bury it under her soil or reuse it as input for another manufacture product the expected economic recovery and growth would be achieved at the expense of the environment. But what is shocking about this episode is why was there such an orchestrated opposition when China sent organic fertilizer to Sri Lanka in 2021 while toxic waste imports from the West inspire no resistance?   

Only a few days ago on Tuesday April 2 2024 President Ranil Wickremesinghe called foreign investors to get ready to capitalize on the outbreak of a new wave of growth, which according to him is around the corner. May someone ask the president when was the last growth wave, what was achieved under it and who invested and profited? One wonders whether turning this blessed island, which is endowed with such an enviable natural beauty and environment into a dump for industrial waste, is part of RW’s strategy to convert the economy into an export driven high-tech industrial miracle by 2048.

Let me refresh the memory of Colombo Telegraph readers about a poisonous piece of research from the Word Bank about which I spent one hour of lecturing to my post-graduate students in Economics of Globalization. It was in 1991 the then Chief Economist of that bank, Lawrence Summers assisted by his scrivener Lant Pritchett authored what came to be known as the Summers Memo. In that memo they advocated transporting hazardous and polluting industries from the First World to the Third. Their argument was based on a cost-benefit analysis which concluded that it was cheaper to establish those industries on low wage countries where there is plenty of space to pollute and peoples’ life in that part of the world was dispensable in order to save the capitalist world. When that memo got leaked and Roberto Smeraldi of Friends of the Earth published it in the Journal do Brazil, Pritchett tried to save his master by claiming that the memo was authored by him, that Summers only signed it, and that it was written with an element of “sarcasm”. The only sarcasm hidden in that memo was about their disgraceful estimation about the value of life of people inhabiting the so-called Third World. However, that excuse only angered Brazil’s Environment Secretary Jose Lutzemberger who condemned “the arrogance of many conventional economists concerning the nature of the world we living in”. The question this episode raises at present is what value the importers of hazardous materials into Sri Lanka attach to the lives of people in this country? Summer’s diabolic economics and West’s racist arrogance are not dead even now.

Sri Lanka’s economic crisis represents the sum total of several crises including an emerging climatic and environmental catastrophe. Centuries of wanton damage to and destruction of nature’s gift to this fertile country has caused unpredictable changes causing climatic and environmental disasters. That crisis was worsened by unplanned and prestigious infrastructure development by successive governments to enhance the popularity of their leaders, not to mention the opportunities such development created for private opulence amidst public misery. Import of industrial waste adds one more element to the environmental crisis. Nature always handles its own waste best and maintains a delicate balance but it cannot be expected to take care of the unlimited waste heaped on it by greedy humans. Today’s climatic and environmental crises are in a sense natures revenge.        

The environmental crisis is global and came to be noticed by economists and policy makers only during the last quarter of 20th century. The 1972 report by the Club of Rome titled Limits to Growth was an eyeopener. But even after almost fifty years the global financial system and its international guardians like IMF, WB, ADB and so on pay only lip service to environmental protection. There is a false confidence mixed with an element of intellectual arrogance that technology would solve the problem.  But technology is part of the problem and not its permanent solution. The concept of green (growth) accounting that takes into account the environmental cost of production and other social costs is the result of a global environment movement spearheaded by a new generation of youth calling for a halt to the narrow approach to economic development and growth. Green accounting will certainly provide a more modest picture of the hyped confidence about IMF’s growth magic. There is an absolute need for behavioural change on the part of all members of society and all sectors of the economy so that future generations could inherit a livable earth. Does importing hazardous materials represent behavioural change by money minded industrialists and entrepreneurs? Why then is the official silence on this matter?

Economic recovery to promote sustainable growth is not possible in the long run unless the system within which that economy operates is cleansed of other crises. Environmental crisis is one of them. Even Sri Lanka’s debt crisis for that matter like the global debt crisis is caused by a financial system whose mechanics ignores environmental values. IMF is part of this financial complex and its agenda for recovery to which RW claims full credit and which he wants to implement with the force of law if need arises, is absolutely class biased and system biased. The so-called safety net recommended by IMF and dished out through aswesuma by RW is pittance tantamount to the proverbial crumbs falling from the master’s table. In reality, the cost of recovery is disproportionately born by the poor and underprivileged and the success claimed so far have not benefited the poor and underprivileged. For instance, who is enjoying the benefits of low inflation and appreciated rupee? As long as the market fails to translate these positives into lower prices the poor would be shut out of the recovery. This is why the class that is benefiting from IMF’s economic prescription is vigorously campaigning to discredit a party like NPP, which is prepared to change the system totally and try homegrown alternatives without shutting the economy from the world outside. In that sense, the forthcoming battles for presidency and parliament, whether fought in tandem or sequentially, would virtually represent class struggle. The new generation of young voters should decide the victor.

In the meantime, RW has moved the country well and truly into the vortex of a growing oceanic US-China superpower struggle with India in between and determined to penetrate deeply into Sri Lanka’s economic architecture. India’s widening sphere of influence together with Israel’s closer relations with RW regime is music to White House. As reward for this US tilt Sri Lanka may win a temporary reprieve from debt servicing by postponement of settlement to 2028-2042 with reduced 2% interest. The hope is that Sri Lanka by then would have accumulated enough foreign reserves to settle the debt and fund sustainable growth. Perhaps, it is on that expectation RW is promising to “empower citizens with basic needs”. He has become a merchant of dreams. But, given the economic constraints created by the wars in Europe and Middle East that hope must be qualified with the economists escape route ceteris paribus. 

*Dr. Ameer Ali, Murdoch Business School, Murdoch University, W. Australia

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Latest comments

  • 7
    0

    Dr. A A, To dump their industrial waste in Sri Lanka, they would have given a large sum of money to some very high up with whom they have dealt before. So, it would be good to investigate to whom that money was paid and through what devious route. Is it not time that the citizens got something and not just the robbers.

    • 4
      0

      Hello DTG,
      Greenpeace has highlighted much of the Nuclear Waste dumping in the North Sea and the North East Atlantic Ocean by European Countries, mainly the UK. https://news.cnrs.fr/articles/tracking-radioactive-barrels-in-the-atlantic I personally witnessed such Dumping around 1983. I was on a Diving Research Vessel, testing out a new High Resolution Sonar System, when we received a call (ship to ship) to try to locate an object lost in our vicinity. We were give the approximate size and location of the object. We proceeded to the location and found the object, a distinctive barrel shape of the correct size. This was pre-GPS however our Sat Nav System was pretty accurate and the co-ordinates given. We were asked/ordered to move to a location about 10 Nautical Miles away and await instructions. A Nuclear Waste container had been lost during transfer at sea. A Navy Team of Divers then recovered the Waste Barrel and we resumed our operations.
      Since Nuclear Waste Disposal has been curtailed European Governments (including the UK) have been desperately trying to find alternatives – so be careful Sri Lanka people, you don’t know what the Government might agree to.
      Best regards

  • 4
    0

    Scary!

    • 9
      1

      The imports of hazardous is not scary, it is a business going for many years. The most scary is the politics of this country and people of this island electing those scary politicians even though they knew well that they are electing the same monsters again and again.

      • 3
        0

        Hazardous material need not be hazardous waste. If it is the latter it is a serious issue.

  • 4
    2

    Dear Dr Ameer Ali,
    .
    It hadn’t struck me
    to compare the relative unconcern about toxic waste on the MV Dali with the rumpus over the consignment of organic fertilizer from China. The Baltimore Bridge collapse was a blessing for Lanka, but in cases like this the question immediately arises as to how many such consignments have already found their way here.
    .
    There was concern elsewhere, but little in this country.
    .
    https://www.commonwealthunion.com/dalis-toxic-waste-ignites-concerns/
    .
    Ameer has given much from his own first hand knowledge of the Summers Memo. Add to that the many concerns voiced, even in Britain, about earlier experiences:
    .
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jul/25/sri-lanka-finds-hazardous-waste-in-uk-metal-recycling-cargo
    .
    We know that disposal of nuclear waste is a major concern; the cynicism that Developed Countries display about reducing us to a Gehenna is real.
    .
    Compare that with the worst that the contaminated organic fertilizer cargo could have done to our soil. It could have brought plant and even animal diseases here. No comparison to nuclear waste!
    .
    https://theprint.in/world/organic-fertilizer-imports-strain-china-sri-lanka-ties-report/1166445/
    .
    We have already been saying that Ranil cares not a jot what happens to this this Eden that we were blessed with, when he is no more. Our worst fears are being realised.

    • 4
      3

      SM,
      You are being misled by some inexperienced local journalist on a foreign website, looking for something sensational to write about.
      1. There is no ” nuclear waste” on the ship, or any waste at all.
      2. There are hazardous chemicals, intended for Ansell Lanka.
      3. Anything hazardous has to be reported 3 days in advance of docking in Colombo.
      4. There were several weeks before docking.
      5. At the moment, the hazard is in the US, due to damaged containers leaking.
      https://www.sundaytimes.lk/240407/news/chemical-on-board-dali-was-raw-material-used-to-make-industrial-gloves-says-boi-company-554211.html
      .
      https://apnews.com/article/baltimore-bridge-collapse-cargo-ship-dali-09aeffc6fa81f3069d4ba226def90555

      • 7
        2

        “Who imported those materials and for what purpose and who exported them are unclear. “
        What rubbish! The company that ordered the chemicals is Ansell Lanka, which makes industrial gloves.Dr. Ali should have checked before going to town with conspiracy theories.
        .
        https://www.sundaytimes.lk/240407/news/chemical-on-board-dali-was-raw-material-used-to-make-industrial-gloves-says-boi-company-554211.html
        “is left to the readers to reach their own conclusion about who must have imported the hazardous materials, for what purpose and under what conditions. Is this the first of such imports or were there others”
        The company has made clear that it regularly imports the chemicals, and will import them in future. There is no need to make an unnecessary hoo-ha. Even the garment industry imports or produces hazardous chemicals.
        Authors need to do some reading before jumping to conclusions.

        • 5
          0

          Hello OC,
          When I first visited Sri Lanka in 2013 I was taken aback by the widespread use of Asbestos here. Even back in the 1960s when old WW2 pre-fabs (Cheap and cheerful Bungalows built using pre-fabricated components) were being dismantled, my father warned us to keep clear as Asbestos was dangerous. “In 2015 Sri Lanka imposed a ban on Asbestos products which was to be effective from 2018, but it was later shifted to 2024”. https://scientist.lk/2021/06/21/sri-lanka-to-control-asbestos-imports-minister-of-environment/ Has this law been enacted yet?
          Best regards

          • 4
            3

            LS,
            “Has this law been enacted yet?”
            I don’t think so. It’s freely available. Asbestos is used for roofing here, and is bound up with cement, unlike in Europe, where it is used, I believe mostly loose as insulation. It takes less labour to install than clay tiles, and needs less maintenance.
            I believe the delay in implementation has something to do with Russia, which sells a lot of asbestos to us.

          • 5
            0

            LS
            Asbestos is very dangerous when used on its own.
            Boiler, ducting and building insulation with asbestos is dangerous, and I doubt its use here that way now.
            The danger is in microscopic airborne fibre that can enter the lungs. Larger fibre does not pose such risk.
            I just picked this up: https://www.asbestos.qld.gov.au/sites/default/files/asbestos-cracked-damaged-weathered-asbestos-cement-sheeting.pdf
            I also saw among others:
            https://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/environmentinhk/air/guide_ref/asbestos_removal_rural_area_01.html
            *
            The risk is not in the sheets themselves (as asbestos is bonded to cement and unlikely to work loose) but real for handlers of asbestos in the manufacture of sheets.
            Disposal of weathered sheets could pose a problem as some fibre could work loose.
            Thus we have a bigger issue in the disposal of old cement-asbestos sheets, as we also tend to reuse removed sheets.

            • 5
              0

              Also saw:
              “Asbestos has been banned in 55 countries worldwide. But not in China, Russia, India, Canada – or the United States.”
              [https://www.asbestosnation.org/facts/asbestos-bans-around-the-world/]

          • 0
            0

            Dear LankaScot,
            .
            PART ONE
            .
            Four comments so far
            on asbestos – all spot on.
            .
            Yes, I know that asbestos is dangerous if ingested, and that happens when the dust is breathed in.
            .
            A broken sheet is hazardous, since some of the fibre may escape. A ban was proposed about twenty years ago; Russia lobbied against it.
            .
            The position in this 66 year old house, where I now tend to live alone:
            .
            There is an asbestos ceiling in every room originally built by my father. But the asbestos has been painted, which diminishes the hazard. The roof itself is of pure corrugated aluminium sheets (very rare 66 years ago). Since they were coming apart, about 15 years ago, they were firmly attached to one another using aluminium pop rivets:
            .
            https://www.twi-global.com/technical-knowledge/faqs/pop-rivet
            .
            Had the rivets been of some other metal, there would have been corrosion caused by slow electrolysis (rain water is now slightly acidic).
            .
            Tbc

            • 0
              0

              PART TWO
              .
              Back to the asbestos ceiling: It’s old and painted over, and must have little toxicity escaping now. Besides, removing it may result in breakages which could release toxic substances. However, more importantly, I can’t afford to re-do the ceiling, and I know that I’m now old enough to know that I must soon die of some cause – so why bother.
              .
              My savvy father died in 1963.
              .
              Some rooms were added later by my mother. The roof (with little gradient) was unsatisfactory. It was redone, using this type of sheet:
              .
              https://amano.lk/product/amano-colour-bonded-roof-deck-w-88/
              .
              Please explore the features yourselves. Rain falling on the roof is very noisy. Before fixing the roof this was fixed two inches below the roofing sheets.
              .
              https://hardwaremart.lk/product/foil-double-side-foil-3mm-8mm-mcfoil/
              .
              The rooms are much cooler, but squirrels nest between Mcfoil and the Amano sheets.
              .
              Panini Edirisinhe of 51B, Golf Links Road, Bandarawela.

              • 0
                0

                Hello Sinhala_Man,
                It is the same here (near Welligala, Central Province) with most of the local houses roofed with Asbestos and in need of repair. The cost of Clay Tiles puts them out of the reach of most families. Our roof, which was the same as the example you gave, cost around 30 Lakh including labour. I have asked many times why Sri Lankans are paid poverty salaries and have to pay European prices. No one has given a good answer (maybe there are Capitalist policies for the price of Goods and Feudal policies for the peasants remuneration).
                Best regards

                • 0
                  0

                  LS,
                  “have asked many times why Sri Lankans are paid poverty salaries and have to pay European prices. ” Not always true.
                  For instance, the minimum bus ticket is Rs. 30 here, and 1 Euro in Amsterdam (tram)
                  Petrol is cheaper here than in London
                  https://www.confused.com/petrol-prices
                  Electricity is cheaper here even now.
                  But most other imported stuff costs more. Even chicken is cheaper in London than here, though a cooked chicken meal is cheaper here.

                  • 1
                    0

                    Hello OC,
                    “For instance, the minimum bus ticket is Rs. 30 here, and 1 Euro in Amsterdam (tram)”. My sisters (all three over 60) don’t pay anything in Scotland. My niece (Sri Lankan) has just arrived back from Doha for a Vacation after 5 years there. I took her shopping today and she was shocked by the Sri Lankan prices. She is a Cashier in a large Supermarket in Doha so knows all the prices. But she is a good-hearted girl and brought us a box of KitKats.
                    Best regards

          • 0
            0

            Dear Readers,
            .
            How bad is one-time exposure to asbestos?
            If you suspect past exposure to asbestos, try not to panic. The odds of developing a life-threatening condition from one-time exposure are low. If the event was extreme, however, such as the 9/11 terrorist attack that sent hundreds of tons of toxic dust into the air, the risk is higher

            How long does it take for asbestos to harm you?
            It may take five to 20 years before symptoms develop. The accumulated, inhaled asbestos fibres produce scarring (fibrosis) of the lung. The lung develops a ‘honeycomb’ appearance. The scar tissue, or ‘fibrosis’, is hard and inflexible – this makes the lungs stiffen and stops them working properly.

            Please read more below:
            https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/asbestos-and-your-health

        • 1
          0

          Thank you, dear oc.
          .
          So then, I’m unlikely to have nightmares in a few hours’ time.

        • 5
          1

          OC,

          Still, 764-tons of hazardous material is an enormous amount for a small country like ours to import for say, one year, leave alone just one company! And we don’t know how much more is on its way to SL.

          Then there’s the Wannathamulla disaster. Big business by local political businessmen, this garbage dumping by the West!

          Now most of the dirty Indian coastlines have been cleaned up I hear. Previously, private Indian importers of garbage made huge bucks from countries like UK for it, and spread the garbage all over the Indian coastline.

          • 4
            1

            Meetotamulla Garbage Dump Disaster, I mean.

            • 4
              1

              Ok….the Sunday Times article says that only one container was to be downloaded to Sri Lanka. But can we trust this as true?

              This newspaper is run by Ranil and his family and cronies, and for Ranil’s 2048 Western-look-alike deal, and in line with pleasing the IMF and the selling of Lankan lands by farmers who are deleberately caught up in debt, one can deduce that that hazmat waste (radioactive or otherwise) will be buried under our ancient farmland.

          • 2
            2

            Ramona,
            “Still, 764-tons of hazardous material is an enormous amount for a small country like ours to import for say, one year, ” It is raw material for Ansell Lanka.
            Look up who Ansell is. It’s an Australian company operating in the FTZ, for export. It sells NINE BILLION pairs of surgical gloves from its factories. 764 tons is peanuts.
            Even petrol is “hazardous “, and we import much more of that.

            • 1
              2

              Ramona,
              The 764 tons was in 55 containers. Only one was for local use, the rest for India.

              • 3
                1

                We don’t know that for sure, do we OC. We will wait for the Lankan Opposition to get to the bottom of it.

                • 2
                  0

                  Ramona,
                  In any case, why worry about something that happened in USA, not here?

                  • 2
                    0

                    OC,

                    US will clean it up and rebuild its bridge just fine. The travesty and shame is on Lankan government for sneakily importing such hazmats where Lankan billionaires importing such material become even richer to develop the Motherland, as per Ranil’s 2048 development drive, and in merger with India.

                    • 0
                      0

                      Ramona,
                      Ansell is Australian. No Lankan billionaires. There was nothing sneaky. Can you run garment factories without hazardous chemicals?
                      Why don’t you scold the US government for putting that bridge where ships could crash into it?

                    • 2
                      0

                      OC,

                      Of course, there are Lankan billionaires very much in hand with these deals! Garment factories were fine before, with any pollution well below limits. But now Ranil wants to increase production a thousand-fold to balance out the debt repayments to the IMF and others that he keeps borrowing from. Baltimore bridge has been there for over 40 years with no incident. But it is irrelevant to the discussion.

          • 4
            0

            Most industrial chemicals are hazardous.
            There are hazardous substances and there is hazardous waste.
            The hazard is in confusing the two.

            • 1
              0

              SJ,

              Both hazardous chemicals and waste are toxic. Ranil will force industrial production and pollution on our land a thousand-fold, with haz. chemicals sent up into the air, and haz. waste buried in the ground or flowing in our rivers. All for repaying debt upon debt.

              • 0
                0

                Ramona,
                “Ranil will force industrial production and pollution on our land a thousand-fold”
                Well, aren’t you happily living in the land that gave us Silent Spring and Three Mile Island?
                What makes you think we can’t tolerate it?

                • 1
                  0

                  OC,

                  Typical comment of the Lankan who wants to ape the West. Again, where I live is not relevant to the discussion. But that I am here, I can tell you, gives me a wider perspective.


                  America polluted itself at a time when capital was essential for their survival. It was do or die for over 300-million people. There was no halfway point. Changing the system is slow, though most yearn for it.

                  So, why in God’s holy name is Sri Lanka who could have been rich in traditional jobs and possesses abundant natural resources, trying to be like America?

            • 0
              0

              If doing such industries, people should be made aware again and again. However, the people of our country are far away from proper awareness because the mainstream visual media, i.e. television channels are in a race to telecast “abusive” teledrama series. Most of them are non-educational but close to childish Hindi stories. It is a kind of indianization of lanken arts I would say.
              I think LANKEN TV media is responsible for all the stupidity of the population as most of the people today don’t read news papers and they are highly dependent on television programs in many homes.

        • 3
          0

          OC,

          Many people seem to conflate ‘hazardous’ with ‘toxic,’ and the Daily Mirror picked it up from an anonymous blogger at eesrilanka.wordpress.com

          That is the quality of SL journalism.

          Another thing to note is that the WSJ reported Sri Lanka is a trans-shipment point. Many containers would be loaded onto other ships in Colombo and taken to different countries in the region.

          • 2
            0

            Agnos, you’re right. Some of the information reported in Lanka media are absolutely ridiculous and wrong. Recently I saw a report on DM, saying patient died of amoxy- clav VACCINE, the word vaccine was repeated many times. Whereas Amoxycillin with clavulanic acid is not a vaccine but a good old antibiotic , still widely in use. Apparently a test dose was not given prior to administering the full dose.

      • 0
        0

        Dear old codger,
        .
        Many thanks for your point by point critique.
        .
        You’re right! I was, at many stages in my life, starting at age 14, trained in the close reading of texts – and yet I appear to have faltered badly.
        .
        Both links worked, and were relevant.
        .
        More later.
        .
        Panini Edirisinhe (NIC 483111444V) of 51B, Golf Links Road, Bandarawela

    • 4
      2

      S M ,

      Just for you ! Very sensitive Material !

      Racist govts we had and still having , always did and still doing
      everything in their power to destroy the wealth and the wealthy
      of the minority at any cost , it could even be importing Sewage
      from Somalia if it makes a Sinhala Buddhist stands taller than a
      reputed minority ! Where is Suleman’s , Kaleels and Rathnams ?
      How did Nawaloka , Asiri and Lanka Hospitals spring up and
      replaced them ? These are just few instances and the list is long .
      Most of today’s Sinhala Nouvau Rich are Thieves in one way or
      other , propped up by govt injection of resources through various
      channels . Instant Money got popular with JRJ open Market .
      Just take a look , even countries like India has warned their
      citizens against travels to Israel and Iran and the region but we ?
      The 2500 year Chest Beats ? Starting to send work force to Israel !
      Seeking Luxury in Bloody Battle ground which is real Cemetery .
      Adding value to life ? Well , no point talking about how we are all
      going to change tomorrow under new colours , that is another day
      but please note I am talking about yesterday and today that are
      going to shape tomorrow , I hope you understand S M . Again ,
      nothing personal .

      • 1
        1

        WhyWhy,
        “Where is Suleman’s , Kaleels and Rathnams ? How did Nawaloka , Asiri and Lanka Hospitals spring up?”
        I agree with you, there is discrimination, but not in business. For example, the beneficiary of the Sugar Tax scam was Muslim-owned Pyramid Wilmar.
        The biggest garment exporters are minority -owned, like many food importers. Hemas Hospitals, despite the name, is Muslim owned.
        Nawaloka is close to bankruptcy. Some can do business, others can’t.
        Nowadays, minorities have learnt not to name their businesses after themselves. The thugs who burn businesses will assume “Hemas” or “Expo” are Sinhala owned.

        • 0
          1

          O C ,

          Thanks dear for your participation . As for the Muslims , they do
          become part of All Kinds of Good and Bad affairs in the
          country in their normal day to day life , thanks to their Politics
          with both major traditional parties . But what I am saying is all
          about Institutionalised Racism . Your last two lines , usually
          Pakistani and Indian origin (Borahs) do name their businesses
          after Sinhala look like names to win business . I am talking about
          Moors . And if you talk about Garment Exporters , it is all purely
          Politics involved Business. Did you see , Brandix gifted billions
          worth of medical equipment to Ragama Teacing hospital and
          the Country’s President went there to receive it ? Well organised
          thugs know who owns what businesses dear . Businesses are
          registered and you can not run them hiding behind false names .
          There are no Saints in Business Today , but my point is , some
          business Moguls are created today with Govt backing to Eliminate
          apolitical business climates dominated by the minority .

          • 1
            0

            WhyWhy,
            Thugs are usually illiterate. I remember an occasion when thugs oppose the opening of a Keells store because they thought Ken Balendra owned it!

          • 0
            0

            oc & ww
            “Nowadays, minorities have learnt not to name their businesses after themselves. The thugs who burn businesses will assume “Hemas” or “Expo” are Sinhala owned.”
            Why did Japanese electronic goods go by the name Sony? And there is the reputed typewriter brand ‘Brother’
            A very popular Chinese fountain pens brand is ‘Hero’.
            To sell goods one uses brand names that a buyer can handle with ease.
            *
            Btw, did not Brandix get a little generous after a little hitch concerning COVID.

      • 0
        0

        Thanks, whywhy,
        .
        I read through your comment many hours ago. I’m not sure how to respond, and I will move on.
        .
        I don’t think that I know sufficient chemistry, etc, but what you say is true. We don’t monitor sufficiently, and we allow all sorts of things into the country.
        .
        However, this comment of mine will hardly stand up to much scrutiny – but then comments will close soon.
        .
        Panini Edirisinhe

        • 0
          0

          S M ,

          Appreciate your thoughts .

  • 3
    3

    Would it have shamed Easter attack? No doubt.

    • 0
      0

      Nathan,
      .
      There is enough evidence to accuse Rajapaksa of being the main architect of the Easter Sunday disaster that injured hundreds of others and killed nearly 270 of innocent people. The criminals wanted to excercise their suicide attacks, however, the MLECHCHA Rajapakses made Sri Lanka a prime location for such an attack.
      The 52 days government and SORYSENA dispersed to Singapore to check the ECG is a real proof of that drama. If this country and its people were under the rule of law, RAJAPAKSEHS should not have been given a chance to celebrate the “Sinhala Tamil New Year”.
      So, whatever government comes in the future, it will not be easy to hang these donkeys before we die.

      I was saddened today as I could not understand why NPP Nalin Jayatissa participated in a public event where people were anointed with oil. These are myths and the NPP must break free from such myths if it wants to make a real difference.

      Please watch the video below …. at the 4.10 th minute.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOuYVVefRas

      However, it seems that even today, the public’s understanding of Rajapaksa has not diminished. How dare some of their staunch supporters appear in front of the television screen today as if they don’t remember July 2022? I think this nation is born sick.

  • 4
    0

    “Summer’s diabolic economics and West’s racist arrogance are not dead even now.”
    This is the TRUTH our citizens of the Isle has to recognise. Together the corrupt rules & Business People are working against the hapless Sri Lankan citizens. Media too run by the STOOGES of the Politicians hide the ACTUAL situations/Happenings from the General Public. Foreign ambassadors /High Commisioners based in our country are there to look after THEIR interests and not OURS. By infighting with our own brothers and sisters, We are still continuing to DESTROY the country. “SYSTEM CHANGE” that we are all hoping forms STILL very elusive as those WHO are enjoying it’s BENEFITS will not easily GIVE-UP.

  • 5
    1

    Good analysis. Foreign investment has not worked for Sri Lanka. The type of investment that is brought in has not been of the right kind. There is too much of corruption that has accompanied it. The elite classes soon get into partnerships with foreign investors, The open economy which financial institutions recommend allow little national control over foreign investments. RW is already marked as a saviour. The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank speak of the signs of an economic upturn and how it could be stunted by elections. We see a leading Buddhistt priest nodding agreement. The message is either don’t hold elections or re-elect Ranil. The trend will reach a crescendo as time goes on. The old brigade is regrouping. The ranks of privilege are regrouping to ensure that Ranil continues. The US and others will manipulate the economic crisis to ensure an outcome favourable to them which is to elect Ranil. So, AKD may be a false dawn for us.

    • 3
      1

      “RW is already marked as a saviour. The World Bank and the Asian Development Bank speak of the signs of an economic upturn and how it could be stunted by elections.”

      The world bank, ADB, IMF all see that the country is going forward towards economic upturn, so they all believe that Sri Lanka needs tmore of their loans (double the size of the current debt) to reach the peak of development that brings similar to the developed nations in 2048. In other words you need more loans from them to make the debt level to double the size of the current debt.
      We all know that Rajapaksa family/ Gotabaya robbed the country’s economy in order to oppress the Tamils and Muslims. They did not know how to manage the funds. That does not mean that the whole amount of the debt is caused by Rajapaksa family. Ranil or UNP also did the same but they made sure that dollar availability maintained at the same level. You cannot forget that Bond scam by Ranil reduced the Central Banks stock of currency. No one talks about it now. Ranil is the man who protects all criminals including Rajapaksas, in other word, it is the IMF, World Bank, ADB on behalf of West now protect both Ranil and Rajapaksas and other criminals.

  • 1
    1

    AA,
    “…….Reported to be carrying a total of 4644 containers of which 56 had been loaded with 764 tons of hazardous materials – mostly corrosives and inflammables – which were destined to be unloaded in Colombo.”
    The SLPA has since clarified, (Last week), that only 1 (One) of those containers are for Colombo!!??

    • 2
      4

      Mahila,
      Some people need an axe to grind.

  • 2
    0

    Any government that seriously contemplates selling off historic buildings such as the Nuwara Eliya Post Office as part of its’ economic recovery plan, clearly has no such plan. What we are witnessing in Sri Lanka today, is a fire sale of public assets on a scale never seen before.

  • 2
    3

    Dr AA, I found all your previous writings factual and logical. This is different, fear mongering.
    1. Colombo is a transhipment hub; Not all hazmat containers were destined to SL.
    2. Containers listed as hazmat do need not be hazardous waste. Some raw material required for plastic industry are chemicals, polymer resins categorized as hazmat.

    Importers are not government agencies or Adani group. The importers are private companies. I could not understand the link between “Who imported those materials………” and the US International Development Finance Corporation and Adani who were awarded the West Container Terminal project.

    I know one could clear anything from the SL Customs with the widespread corruption in SL by submitting falsified documents. I am not disputing that there could be some companies in SL that dump west’s industrial waste there. However, one cannot come to any conclusion without establishing that that is a fact.

  • 3
    0

    Why forget Dhammika Perera imported bio waste containers from UK but the paper work says Mattresses
    All These are just headlines no follow ups
    .
    People don’t have a clue whether ex Hon MP Duminda Silva in or out of prison/having entire floor of Sri Jayawardena Pura hospital with personal gym attached to it

    • 2
      0

      Is this Dhammika Perera the Casino man or the Hayleys Man? Isn’t bio waste fecal matter. What can you do with that?

      • 2
        0

        Sonali ,

        He’s also the Nation Trust Man , Sampath Bank Man and Singer Srl
        Man ! Faecal Money Won’t smell that bad ! He is a Sweet Smell in
        our Parliament who came out to Bail out Our Country From
        Financial Disaster ! The Miracles of Asia ! Who else can do such
        wonders ?

      • 2
        0

        Sonali,
        They are both the same.

  • 3
    2

    Don’t rush to guess. SL has accepted tons of waste from abroad in past years. Money for some of us.
    Not too long ago, someone failed to get their cut so a leak to an obliging media created an uproar. Then the discovery was made of container-loads of UK hospital waste being imported. Some containers were sent back, some remain in the Port, to this day.
    The UK containers included shit-saturated infant and adult diapers.
    What waste and hazardous materials got through previously without notice is anyone’s guess.
    There’s money for Sri Lanka in Western shit and waste, obviously.
    Now the US National Transportation Safety Board tells us “some 500-odd containers on the ill-fated Dali were destined for Colombo. It said 56 of those containers held 764 tons of hazardous materials”.
    Ansell Lanka General Manager Ramesh Nanayakkara says only one of those containers was for his company.
    Then an unnamed source rushed to say the other 500-odd containers were due for transhipment. Really! Mysterious no?
    The US NTSB said among the 764 tons of hazardous materials coming to Colombo “were corrosives, flammables, and so-called Class 9 hazardous materials like lithium-ion batteries”.

    • 2
      0

      “The UK containers included shit-saturated infant and adult diapers.”
      Perhaps intended as organic fertilizer?

      • 2
        1

        “Perhaps intended as organic fertilizer?”

        Probably Chinese manufactured, for which Gota must have placed this order before his escape.

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