Malinga to represent Mumbai Indians in Champions League 2014!

Sri Lanka Twenty20 captain Lasith Malinga officially informed his participation for upcoming Champions League Twenty20 tournament with his Indian Premier League team Mumbai Indians to the Sri Lanka Cricket yesterday.

Lasith Malinga also captained the local team Southern Express which was the champion of the Domestic T20 league and part in Champions League T20 in India .

Kumar Sangakkara who was faced in the same situation, chose his Domestic team Kandurata last year over the IPL team Sunrisers.

Sri Lanka Eco-Friendly Hotel in Sigiriya!

A 650 million rupees eco-friendly hotel will be build in Sigiriya in central Sri Lanka by Union Resorts and Spa Ltd, the state investment promotion agency said.

“Recent improvements in the trade and current account balances notwithstanding, Sri Lanka remains vulnerable to external shocks,” the IMF’s executive board said following report by a mission which engaged in annual Article IV consultations with the country.
“Medium-term sustainability will depend on maintaining an outward orientation, diversification of the export structure, and a judicious use of foreign borrowing—particularly given the rapid increase in debt servicing costs that have accompanied the shift from bilateral concessional debt to new loans on commercial terms.”

A Market Access Debt Sustainability Analysis (MAC-DSA) of Sri Lanka by the IMF has found that Sri Lanka’s debt sustainability was sensitive growth and foreign exchange shocks.

“The staff urges caution with respect to external borrowing through the banking system.”

Sri Lanka is recovering from a balance of payments crisis in 2011/2012 triggered by high credit growth and weak credit over the past year has allowed the Central Bank to collect reserves by purchasing dollars to prevent the rupee from appreciating.

Amid weak credit and foreign reserve collections, the external current account deficit had also declined over the recent past.

In 2011and 2012 the current account deficit expanded as strong credit was given a further boost through central bank credit of equivalent about two billion US dollars (printed money) which was used to sterilize forex sales and keep interest rates down.

Inflation

The IMF said current monetary policy was appropriate given weak credit and low inflation.

“However, the overall picture is complex and requires close monitoring,” the IMF said.

“On the one hand, with economic activity apparently on the rise and private credit (outside of pawning activity) beginning to show signs of recovery, the authorities should be ready to adjust rates as needed to ensure price stability—particularly given the long lags involved in monetary transmission.

“On the other hand, the current low inflation environment and the apparent change in inflation expectations offers an opportunity for a downward shift in the interest rate structure that might benefit the investment environment (and borrowing costs) over the medium term.

“Given the mix of signals, a cautious approach is warranted and the staff believes policy rates should remain on hold for the near term.”

The IMF also urged the government to collect more taxes from the people to be able to repay its debts, saying there was limited to room to cut spending given infrastructure needs.

But other analysts have said Sri Lanka has a bloated state with large state worker cadre including the military compared to workers in productive sectors as well as loss making state enterprises where there is room for improvement.

In recent years the Treasury has been able to cut overall spending as a share of gross domestic product, while keeping up capital spending and reducing the overall deficit though concerns have been raised about borrowings through government guarantees.

Sri Lanka is also targeting an overall reduction in debt in the medium to about 65 percent of gross domestic product from the current 80 percent levels.

Exchange Rate

The IMF mission to Sri Lanka believed that there was room to “take another look at the medium- and long-term strategy for debt reduction, and consider a more ambitious debt target (more strongly associated with reduced vulnerability) over a longer time horizon.”

The Central Bank was also urged to keep the rupee flexible.

In the recent past authorities have prevent the rupee from appreciating despite weak credit growth in bid to collect foreign reserves.

Staff’s analysis indicates that the exchange rate is broadly in line with fundamentals, and staff saw merit in central banks’ purchases to build its reserves, which remain on the lower end of most reserve adequacy metrics,” the Executive Board said.

Happy Birthday Paul Anka!

ABOUT
Teen singer-songwriter who released hits like “Put Your Head on my Shoulder” and “Diana.” He wrote music for Tom Jones like “She’s a Lady.”

BEFORE FAME
He wrote a love song about his babysitter that shot him to fame, although he later admitted that it was just a song.

TRIVIA
He and Michael Jackson co-wrote “I Never Heard.”

FAMILY LIFE
He married Anne de Zogheb on February 16, 1963; after their divorce on October 2, 2000, he married Anna Anka on July 26, 2008.

ASSOCIATED WITH
He has collaborated with Celine Dion.

Peter Gabriel Says Real World Record Label Can Last Another 25 Years!

Musician Peter Gabriel says his world music label can carry on for at least another 25 years.

Gabriel, who runs Real World records, made the prediction despite dwindling CD sales and the growth in streaming.

“As long as the audience is interested and keeps sustaining us then we’ll deliver what we can”, he said on the 25th anniversary of the label.

The former Genesis musician said consumers had to decide whether to “return some payment” to musicians.

Speaking to BBC News at the Womad Festival in Wiltshire, which he co-founded, Gabriel said: “Records don’t sell in the way they used to.

“We have to make a choice as consumers about whether we want to return some payment, but there is a lot of generosity in people’s hearts.”

He added that the record label would continue to bring new musical artists from around the world to a wider audience and expand its remit, adding more Latin American music while introducing a world hip-hop stage at Womad.

“I think we just want to push our own boundaries a bit and go outside of what’s our comfort zone,” he said.

He set up Real World Records, which grew out of Womad, in 1989 to put world music fans in reach of musicians.

It has released more than 200 albums from artists including the Congolese musician Papa Wemba, The Afro Celt Sound System, The Drummers of Burundi, The Blind Boys of Alabama and Gabriel himself.

Gabriel says a particular highlight was working with the late Qawwali singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, “the Pakistani Pavarotti”, who was one of the first artists to be released by the label.

“I think that was a sort of a landmark in a sense in that we helped him find an audience outside of Qawwali, and that was always one of the main aims for the label,” Gabriel said.

But he added: “We wouldn’t have got involved with any of the artists if we didn’t love what they did.

“I don’t think we had any idea when we set out that we’d be here 25 years later. But it’s great. I think we’ve worked with extraordinary artists so I think we’ve been very lucky.”

Sri Lanka Takes Shield Championship in Rugby!

Sri Lankan Rugby team clinched the Shield Championship in the 20th Commonwealth Games 2014 when they beat Trinidad and Tobago by 47-3 in front of a massive crowd here at the Ibrox Stadium, Glasgow.
Sri Lankans came to the games with the bitter experience from the last two matches played in the competition where they lost with narrow margins.
I was obvious that they have teamed up well for the last appearance in the Commonwealth Games this time and were determined to take something cheer for the fans back in Sri Lanka.
Srinath Sooriya Bandarta opened the scoring for the Lankans in the very first minute but skipper Fazil Marija could not add the extra points. But Marija scored a brilliant try to rectify his mistake and also added extra points to take Sri Lanka forward 12-0.
Anuruddha Wilwara joined the try party with a try followed by another one from Richard Dharmapala. Sooriya Bandara could not add extra points for Wilwara’a try but Marija did not missed the conversion of the try scored by Dharmapala to finish the first half with a healthy lead 24-0.
Trinidad & Tobago tried to come back in the second half but Lankans hold on to the resitence well and Sooriay bandara scored a brilliant try running almost 80 yards to score his second try of the match , and received applaud from the crowd. Marija added extra points and score board read as 31-0.
Tobago’s Anthony Lopez broke the Sri Lanka defence and scored the only try for his team and conversion also successful. Shehan Pathirana and Mithun Hapugoda score two tries before the long whistle and one was converted to finish the match 43-7.
Experssing his views after the match to the Sri Lankan media skipper Marija said that they have learned from the mistakes they did during the entire tournament and came as one temm to take home the shield championship.
“ We hasd good opportunity to win the previous two games. But we could not make it due to some error we have done at the last moment. But I am happy with the way my team played and am grateful to all who were behind us” Marija added.