An Echelon Media Company
Monday December 11th, 2023

X-Press Pearl still smouldering off Sri Lanka, fire fighting continues

ECONOMYNEXT – A fleet of tugs, Sri Lanka Navy and Indian Coast guard vessels are continuing to fight a fire on board the stricken X-Press Pearl which was still smouldering, with the Air Force also dropping dry chemical powder.

As of the morning of May 29, salvors have said the X-Press Pearl’s hull was structurally intact as were the bunker tanks, X-Press Feeders, the owners said.

However smoke was still coming out of the smouldering ship.

Sri Lanka Air Force said a Bell 212 helicopter dropped dry chemical powder on the vessel.

Indian Coast Guard said another vessel ICG Samudra Prahari, joined the relief effort.

The vessel had on board 41,000 litres of Aqueous Film Forming Foam and 700 kilogram of dry chemical powder.

The pollution control ship is capable of firefighting, search and rescue and containment and recovery of oil spills.

X-Press Feeders said an injured crew member who tested positive to Covid-19 was being treated at a military hospital in Sri Lanka and was asymptomatic.

“A second injured crew member continues to recover from his injuries in a local hospital,” the shipping firm said.

“All other crew members who remain in a Colombo quarantine facility are in good health and are in contact with their families.”

Meanwhile authorities in Sri Lanka was continuing beach clean up.

Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa inspected the efforts on Saturday.

State Minister for Finance Shehan Samarasinghe said a 5,000 rupee payment being made for Covid-19 affected low income groups will also be paid to fishermen.

Deep sea fishermen who returned to the island on Saturday complained that nets were damaged with a large volumes of fluffy substance that had got snagged in them, apparently from the ship.

Dead fish were also turning up on the shore, some with burn injuries, local television reports showed. (Colombo/May29/2021)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Leave a Comment

Leave a Comment

Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sri Lanka wants university research to lead to commercially viable products

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s ministry of industries wants to ensure commercially-ready products and services are produced by university research, by facilitating partnerships with factories and entrepreneurs.

After a currency crisis, Sri Lanka’s government is in a drive to boost its trade balance by increasing exports.

“Our export basket hasn’t changed recently, partly because our small and medium entrepreneurs don’t have sufficient research and development facilities (like the multinationals) to innovate their products for the export market,” Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Industries, Chaminda Pathiraja said.

“At the same time, state universities and research institutes produce a large amount of research findings yearly, which end up sitting in those institutions; they don’t reach the industry,” Pathiraja said at a press briefing to announce a program on commercialization of new products and research, to be held tomorrow at the Waters Edge.

The networking forum will bring innovators and manufacturers together to focus on the commercialization of research for the value added tea, coir, spice, dairy products, gem and jewellery and packaging products industries.

“We want to encourage collaboration, through programs like our University Business League etc, so that the research output can be commercialized, and what is produced by our factories can increase in quantity and quality. We must focus on the export market.”

The objective of this program, he said, was to reduce the gap in acquiring innovators’ ideas and skills by the investors, and ultimately boost the manufacturing sector’s efficiency in alignment with the export market.

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka rupee opens at 327.00/50 to the US dollar

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee opened at 327.00/50 to the US dollar on Monday, from 327.00/30 Friday, dealers said.

On the Colombo Stock Exchange, both indices opened up: The All Share Price Index 0.28 percent at 10,823, and the S&P SL20 0.35 percent at 3,113.85.

Bond yields were up.

A bond maturing on 01.08.2026 was quoted at 14.05/20 percent from 14.05/15 percent.

A bond maturing on 15.01.2027 was quoted at 14.05/20 percent from 14.10/25 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.07.2028 was quoted at 14.20/50 percent from 14.20/35 percent.

Continue Reading

Sri Lanka promoting Buddhist tourism from Vietnam, ASEAN

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is planning to boost Buddhist tourism by linking temples in the country with those in East Asia, Foreign Minister Ali Sabry said after to welcoming a delegation of monks from Vietnam.

President Ranil Wickremesinghe, and Minister Sabry have initiated a temple-to-temple program where 100 Sri Lanka temples will be linked with counterparts in the Association of South East Asian Nations region.

“Tourism development will get a lot of growth with the temple-to-temple program,” Minister Ali Sabry said.

Along with the delegation of monks, five travel agents from Vietnam were also invited.

Under the first phase of the Temple-to-temple programs, several monks from Sri Lanka had received invitations from Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam the Foreign Ministry said.

The Temple-to-Temple diplomacy program will be extended to Singapore, Japan, Thailand and Cambodia during the second phrase of the program.

Sri Lanka is targeting 2.3 million tourists in 2023, after getting about 1.5 million this year. (Colombo/Dec10/2023)

Continue Reading