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Koggala: New hotspot for country style housing

Koggala in the deep South seems to be the new hotspot for ‘country style horizontal living’ complexes, property analysts say. Koggala is a laid-back resort town set between a lush tropical lagoon and one of the finest beaches in all Sri Lanka, where modern amenities and leisure facilities meet a rich cultural and historical tradition, they say.

The trend to start country style housing in this area was initiated by Catalina, the first-ever luxury independent living. It is now being replicated by at least two large investors, analysts say. “Since Catalina has been a large project in this area, another is being sought approval from the Board of Investment,” a business analyst told the Business Times. Koggala, boasting one of the longest beaches in the country is within 15 minutes’ drive from Catalina. “Several beautiful beaches lie within easy reach, with luxurious resorts, classy boutique hotels, spas and beach front restaurants. The area is home to a sizeable expatriate community, attracted by the area’s unique charm, atmosphere, history and its wide choice of restaurant and entertainment options. The Southern Expressway offers easy access to Colombo and the international airport,” the analyst said.
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First five months’ tourist arrivals cross 1 m mark

  • Tourist arrivals up 6.2% in May
  • India, China, the UK continue as top sourcing markets 
  • Asia and Pacific largest source of tourist traffic to SL with 65% of total received

By Charumini de Silva

Tourist arrivals during the first five months exceeded one million, reflecting a 14.7% growth, while May saw a 6.2% growth to 129,466 from the comparable period of last year.

According to data released by the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA), tourist arrivals in May amounted to 129,466, up 6.2% from 121,891 in the corresponding month of 2017.  The cumulative arrivals of tourists in the five months rose 14.7% to 1,017,819 compared to 887,093 in the same period last year, continuing the growth momentum kick-started this year.

India continued to be the largest source market in May with 42,073 arrivals, up by 23.1%.

China came in second with 17,103, but the figure is down 7.5% compared to a year earlier. Arrivals from the UK were the third largest at 9,337, up 9.6%. Other major markets included Germany (up 8.7% to 6,906), Australia (up 28.1% to 4,873), Japan (up 48.5% to 4,229 and the US (up 24% to 4,123). France was down 0.4% to 3,721.

Asia-Pacific was the largest source of tourist traffic to Sri Lanka with 65% of the total received in May 2018. Europe accounted for 27%, America 6%, the Middle East 2 % and Africa 0.5%.

Earnings from tourism in March were estimated at $ 433 million, with cumulative earnings amounting to $ 1,313 million during the first quarter of 2018, according to data released by the Central Bank last week.
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EDB adds wellness tourism to export basket from this year

The Export Development Board (EDB) announced that ‘wellness tourism’ would be added to the export basket from this year onwards, setting an initial $ 2 million target for the sector.

“Sri Lanka has not included tourism in calculating the total export revenue. However, from this year onwards, we will take wellness tourism into consideration,” EDB Chairperson Indira Malwatte told journalists in Colombo on Monday.

According to her, the services sector is calculated only with the performance of ICT/BPM, construction, financial services and logistics (transport) till last year. From this year onwards the EDB will enhance its export basket and add wellness tourism.

She also pointed out that wellness tourism has been recognised under the National Export Strategy (NES), which will be submitted to the Cabinet next week.

“The future of tourism should be concentrated on wellness tourism. A normal tourist coming to Sri Lanka only spend about $170 per night, but if you promote the wellness tourism sector with the resorts and other services we have, the sector could easily draw $400 to $450 per night from a tourist.
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SDB to call EOI for Dedduwa next week

The Southern Development Board (SDB) will be calling for Expressions of Interest (EOI) next week to develop the proposed Dedduwa tourism zone.

A highly placed official told the Daily News, SDB is working on the process at present and the EIA and financial feasibility study will also be completed within the next few months.

Located to the east of Bentota, Dedduwa is an area rich in water bodies, marshy lands and paddy fields and a dream of biodiversity enthusiasts.

The government plans to work along with the private sector – bringing in responsible investors and investments to Dedduwa which is being touted as the island’s biggest tourism project. “The plan is to transform a large swathe of the wetlands of Dedduwa into one of Asia’s top three up-market tourism zones,” the official said.

The project to be launched by the Southern Development Board and the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA) will be in line with Mayakoba in Mexico- a well-known global tourism zone with a series of interconnected resort islands, making ample use of the location’s natural ecology.
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English Tax- Barmy Army stand firm for all England fans against RIP OFF Sri Lanka ticket prices

Sri Lanka vs. England 2018 Series Ticketing Policy and Prices

Many of you have booked or are considering booking a tour to the wonderful island of Sri Lanka this winter when England head over for a five ODI, one T20i and three Test tour.

For several weeks we have been exchanging emails with Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) in an effort to obtain as much tour information as possible to pass on to our members and social media followers. We are now in a position to report back our findings.

Based on our vast experience of touring overseas and our well established close liaisons with other Cricket Boards around the world, we offered to work closely with SLC to ensure that supporters’ wants and needs were met and an enjoyable series for all would result.
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Investment from Scandinavian countries grow by 54 % since ’13

The Nordics – Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland which have a global reputation for excellent performance in investing that emphasises on Environmental Social and Governance (ESG) standards and Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) and related international rankings – are eyeing Colombo’s stocks.

Investments from Scandinavian countries have grown by 54 per cent per annum compound annual growth rate (CAGR) since 2013, Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) data shows. These are funds which believe that deliberately investing in companies with good behaviour or agitating to improve the behaviour of offenders — can deliver results. Scandinavian ESG funds and their business communities and government policies are often held up as an example to other countries. In general, socially responsible investors encourage corporate practices that promote environmental stewardship, consumer protection, human rights, and diversity. Some avoid businesses involved in alcohol, tobacco, fast food, gambling, pornography, weapons, contraception/abortion, fossil fuel production or the military.
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Sotheby’s real estate advisory to set up Sri Lanka office

ECONOMYNEXT – Sotheby’s International Realty, a premium property advisory firm said it is starting an office in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo, as upmarket real estate projects come up in the island.

Realpro Realty Solutions Private Limited, Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates’ franchise partner in India, will run the Colombo office.

“The luxury real estate sector in Sri Lanka has a promising future,” said Amit Goyal who heads the Indian office.

“Sri Lanka’s luxury real estate market is expanding rapidly with condominium developments in Colombo, branded resorts and villas along the magnificent coastline, and private estates in the famous tea country, creating a strong luxury footprint in the region.”

The Sotheby’s International Realty said it has more than 22,000 affiliated independent sales associates located in 950 offices in 69 countries and territories worldwide, making sales of108 billion US dollars in 2017.

Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC is a subsidiary of Realogy Holdings Corp, in real estate franchising and provider of real estate brokerage, relocation and settlement services.

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Sri Lanka’s CEB commissions new system controls centre

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s President Maithriplala Sirisensa officially commissioned state-run Ceylon Electricity Board’s a new system control centre to run the country’s power grid after years of delay.

The 7 million Euro National Systems Controls Centre is supplied by Alstom T & D India.

The system has remote terminal units, which collect data from different points of the gird, allowing operators to analyse and data real time and make decisions.

The system will monitor 63 grid substations and 15 power plants.

The Asian Development Bank had funded the project with a loan equal to about 3.0 billion rupees. An upgraded system control centre will reduce the risk of cascading outages, analysts say (Colombo/May17/2018)

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Maga Engineering top contractor for ADB projects in Sri Lanka

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Maga Engineering Pvt. Ltd. construction group has emerged as the top contractor for Asian Development Bank projects in the island in the last five years.

According to ADB data, Maga Engineering has won work worth US$120 million (Rs18.8 billion) in the transport sector in projects funded by ADB loans and grants during the period up to 31 December 2017.

K.D.A. Weerasinghe & Co. Pvt. Ltd. was ranked second among ADB’s top five contractors and suppliers during this period. This was for work in the transport and water sectors and other urban infrastructure and services with contracts worth $96.21 million (Rs15 billion).

LTL Projects Pvt. Ltd. came next with $86.17 million worth of energy projects.

It was followed by Sierra Construction Pvt. Ltd. with deals worth $77.24 million in transport and water and other urban infrastructure and services and K.D. Ebert & Sons Holdings Pvt. Ltd. with transport sector contracts of $76.30 million.

ADB’s biggest funding has been for transport which accounted for almost 30% of loans, grants, and technical assistance commitments.
(COLOMBO, May 04, 2018)