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Japan – UNDP 2 livelihood projects in SL



Earlier today (24), PM Dinesh Gunawardena, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka – Mr. Mizukoshi Hideaki and UNDP Sri Lanka Resident Representative – Ms. Azusa Kubota, launched the 2 new livelihood projects that address the economic crisis in Sri Lanka at Temple Trees.

The ongoing socio-economic crisis has had serious impacts on the agricultural sector in Sri Lanka. The rising energy costs and evolving climate change impacts have further exacerbated due to the situation. In response, the Government of Japan through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Sri Lanka, will provide approximately LKR 1,175 million (approx. USD 3.8 million) to support vulnerable smallholder farming families in the Dry Zone districts, namely North-Central, North-Western and Eastern Provinces, with a focus on women’s economic empowerment and adoption of green agricultural technologies.

Funded by the Japanese Supplementary Budget (JSB) and working together with the Government of Sri Lanka and relevant stakeholders, the intervention aims to achieve its objectives through two projects; the first focusing on diversifying livelihoods and introduce entrepreneurship programmes, targeting women-led MSMEs. The second aims to strengthen energy and food security, through the revival of the rural agricultural economy by providing access to innovative markets, value and supply chain improvements along with the adoption of modern, green agricultural technologies which will increase productivity and efficiency.

A total of 58,000 women and youth will directly benefit from these projects, while indirectly impacting over 132,000 vulnerable community members from the North-Central, North-Western and Eastern Provinces of Sri Lanka.

To mark the beginning of these projects and to recognize the Government of Japan’s support to the interventions, a launch event was held today with the participation of Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Mr. Mizukoshi Hideaki – Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka, Ms. Azusa Kubota – UNDP Sri Lanka Resident Representative, Mr. Tetsuya Yamada – Chief Representative of JICA in Sri Lanka, Agriculture minister Mahinda Amaraweera, Minister of Power and Energy – Kanchana Wijesekera, senior government officials and development partners.

Gracing the occasion, Prime Minister stated, “Government of Sri Lanka appreciates the continuous support extended by the Government of Japan and the United Nations Development Programme towards country’s efforts to recover from the socioeconomic crisis. We believe this is a significant step towards creating a food and energy secure Sri Lanka, both vital sectors to the fabric of the country’s economy.”

Highlighting Japan’s commitment to the people of Sri Lanka in crisis recovery efforts, Ambassador Mizukoshi, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka stated, “Japan has been working together with the Government of Sri Lanka and relevant UN agencies for economic and social empowerment of women in Sri Lanka, including the formulation of National Action Plan for Women, Peace and Security. These new projects will provide for practical means to uplift lives of vulnerable communities. Especially, we recognize the special needs of women-headed household in conflict-affected areas. It is a great opportunity to create positive synergy with UNDP’s expertise and JICA’s technical assistance for supporting livelihood and vulnerable communities.”

Commenting on the role of UNDP in bringing together stakeholders and facilitating such processes in times of need, Ms. Azusa Kubota, Resident Representative, UNDP in Sri Lanka stated, “these are times when multiple-solutions through multiple-partnerships are required because we are faced with compounding and complex challenges. I am grateful for the commitments demonstrated by a wide range of actors present today. We must join hands to address the needs of the most vulnerable and affected segments of the society – particularly women-headed households. And investing in them will have visible, long-term benefits for the families and communities” 


List of professionals whose IRD registration is compulsory




A gazette notice has been issued making it compulsory for those engaged in several fields such as medical, engineering, law, accounting and banking to register with the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) from today (01).

President Ranil Wickremesinghe has issued this gazette as the Minister of Finance, Economic Stabilization and National Policies.  

According to the relevant gazette, the people who are required to register with the IRD are listed below.

1. Practitioners registered with the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC)

2. Members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka

3. Members of the Institute of Certified Management Accountants of Sri Lanka

4. Members of the Institution of Engineers Sri Lanka

5. Members of the Association of Professional Bankers

6. Members of the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects

7. Members of the Institute of Quantity Surveyors Sri Lanka

8. Attorneys-at-Law of the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka

9. Individuals who have registered their businesses in Divisional Secretariats

10. Individuals who are in possession of vehicles registered (other than three-wheelers, motorcycles and hand tractors) in Motor Traffic Department

11. Individuals who have purchased or acquired, by virtue of Deeds Transfer, of any immovable property in Sri Lanka

12. Employees whose monthly contribution from both employee and employer to any Provident Fund is more than Rs. 20,000

13. Any individual who obtains approval for a building plan from a Local Authority

14. Any other individual who receives payment of Rs. 100,000 per month or Rs. 1,200,000 for a 12-month period for providing any services in Sri Lanka

In addition, all persons who have completed the age of 18 on 31 December 2023, or who will turn 18 on or after 01 January 2024, will also be subject to this new provision.

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Upcountry train services disrupted




Train services along the upcountry railway line were disrupted due to a rock slip on the railway line between Haliela and Uduwara Railway Stations this morning (01), the Railways Department said.

Passengers said that while the Udarata Menike train was travelling from Badulla to Colombo at 5.45 this morning, the driver saw the collapsed earth mound and immediately stopped the train preventing a major accident.

The Railways Department said that the restoration of the railway line is currently being done.

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Annamale complains to IGP against Kassapa Thera!




Social activist Kandasamy Annamale Sujith Priyantha alias Sujith Annamale has lodged a complaint to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) yesterday (31) saying that he and his family members have received death threats due to a statement made by Balangoda Kassapa Thera.

The complaint made by Annamale said;

“In a press conference held today (31/05/2023), Balangoda Kassapa Thera said, “Who helped from within the Aragalaya? Sujith Annamale… Sujith Annamale is the one who helped. Therefore, the CID should arrest them as soon as possible and produce them in court. If not, all the Buddhist monks behind me will take it to the street. We will not allow the Buddhist culture of this country to be destroyed.”

Annamale said that due to this statement, the life and property of his family members could be at risk.

“Therefore, please look into it and conduct a proper investigation as soon as possible and ensure the safety of my life and my property,” he said.

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