e-Con e-News

IMF Bribes Central Bank & Media: US & India Set to Split Sri Lanka


Central Bank (CB) Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe is ‘the most trusted’ says US NGO

blog: eesrilanka.wordpress.com

Before you study the economics, study the economists!

e-Con e-News 27 November – 03 December 2022

• India’s Research & Analysis Wing (RAW) ‘spy chief’ Samant Kumar Goel slunk into Colombo to further grab strategic sectors (fuel, ports, etc) and regions (Trincomalee, Mannar, Hill Country, etc) to divide the country. His arrival accounts for the rather muted LTTE Maaveerar Naal or Great Heroes Day on 27 November (see Random Notes).

  India-allied MPs and media then raised greater clamour blaming China for the delay in the IMF’s gifts. Their IMF demand amount to continuing the colonial import-export plantation economy. Warlord-backed Trinitian TNA MP Shanakiyan Rasamanickam is reported as calling for ‘Go Home China’ demonstrations, just like US-funded NGOs are now doing in Thailand, Malaysia, etc. (see ee Focus, Are China and Russia Imperialist?)

• The US government also summoned Foreign Minister Ali Sabry to Washington for a 3-day visit on November 30, just after ‘dual citizen’ Basil Rajapakse returned from the USA. Sabry met with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, also meeting US Senate Foreign Relations Committee members (see ee Sovereignty, Minister Sabry meets).

  ‘The US has been one of the prime movers of the resolution against Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. In this backdrop, diplomatic sources say Washington would try to persuade Sri Lanka to heed the provisions of the resolution. Moreover, a UNHRC Secretariat is now probing allegations against political leaders in SL for alleged human rights violations and ‘economic crimes’.’

US-state news outlet EconomyNext reports, ‘India sends RAW chief after lending $500mn loan’. The media downplayed the Indian government’s ‘commercial interactions’, their economic and political demands, and instead barked out the usual anti-China rhetoric. RAW’s ‘Goel comes amid indirect efforts by Wickremesinghe to meet Indian PM Narendra Modi since last month, sources said… Officials at Sri Lanka’s Foreign Ministry said they did not facilitate RAW chief’s visit…, while the cabinet spokesman swore: ’I swear that I don’t know such an intelligence chief met the president or any other government official.’

  The RAW chief also met finance minister & strategist of the SLPP Basil Rajapaksa… I think the message is related to the upcoming election’… Former president Mahinda Rajapaksa himself in 2015 said it was India and RAW who defeated him. So the RAW chief’s visit could be something more than what we hear. How can India order a sovereign nation on how and whom to deal with?’

   ‘China has also started funding underprivileged universality students in Jaffna and Eastern Universities. This has also drawn Indian concerns, university sources have told EconomyNext. Jaffna University Students’ Union last week said they are opposed to a move by the government to sign a memorandum of understanding with a Chinese agricultural university.’ (ee Sovereignty, RAW chief Samant Kumar Goel)

• Former IMF & current CIA operator Anwar Ibrahim has been narrowly ‘elected’ PM of Malaysia. This recalls 2015 Sri Lanka’s rigged Yahapalana election. The US chose Ibrahim as Chairman of the Development Committee of World Bank & International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 1998. He has been working with the US National Endowment for Democracy (NED) ever since. The US government through the NED has massively poured millions of dollars to Ibrahim’s ‘opposition party, a street front he has helped lead, and media networks promoting him across Malaysia’s information space’ (see ee Sovereignty, Malaysia’s New Prime Minister). Sound familiar?

• ‘Politicians are known for smug moralising and fervent religiosity’, editorializes the Island. But surely, there is no sickening sanctimony more than the ’Fair and Lovely’ moneyed media, especially the English media. Politicians are an easy target, but this week more evidence arrived of the collusion between this even-more unaccountable and unelected media and those officials who work against the country’s interests.

Central Bank (CB) Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe is ‘the most trusted’

and the ‘only person trusted by the majority of Sri Lankans’

to carry out economic reforms in resolving the present economic crisis,

according to the ‘Economic Reform Index’ survey

conducted by Social Indicator (SI), the survey research arm

of the US-government-funded Centre for Policy Alternatives (CPA)

(see ee Economists, Central Bank Governor most trusted)

• ‘There is an unwarranted public debate taking place in Sri Lanka today’, groans the ‘always-former Deputy Governor’ WAW Wijewardena, who usually calls for an ‘open society’. This Monday morning FT columnist is referring to the intensified electronic spitting, sparring and spluttering of Central Bank governors and officials, present and past.

  An unverified accusation doing the social-media circuit, states that recently appointed IMF Country Representative Sarwat Jahan beckoned 6 journalists nominated by Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe to their office at the 14th Floor of the Central Bank, for ‘a highly secretive meeting’ on November 29.

  At that meeting, the ‘IMF’s secret agenda of toppling the Government’ through the new ‘Independent Central Bank’ law was explained. They were told how ‘the new law will place the CB above the country’s laws and parliament, so that thereafter the IMF (read: US Treasury) could control the entire economy, and through that process, the country’.

  The persons so ‘recruited’ to do the bidding of the IMF ‘with the promise of handsome rewards’ are Daily FT‘s Nisthar Cassim, Divaina‘s Shyam Nuwan, Daily News‘ Shirajiv Sirimanne, Adaderana‘s Sisira Kanangaram, and 2 more from Lankadeepa and Virakesari.

• Meanwhile, trade unions accused present CB governor Nandalal Weerasinghe of protecting the export mafia that is illegally hoarding huge dollars outside the country (see ee Focus). Yet as the SBD de Silva noted, the bleeding is otherwise all very legal:

‘The conglomerates can defend their interests abroad without colonialism

based on conquest of territory, for the reason that they can control activities

by their monopoly of technology and markets. First, a good portion of their income

is in the form of technological rents, royalties, licensing rights, technical assistance fees, etc.

The technology is rarely transferred, and its diffusion outside the orbit of such corporations

is rigidly controlled. When deprived of this technology and marketing know-how,

the natural resources and cheap labour of the host countries become idle assets at least in the short run’

– SBD de Silva, The Political Economy of Underdevelopment, 1982

• If Anwar Why Not Weera? – President Ranil Wickremesinghe’s Advisor on Parliamentary Affairs, Professor Ashu Marasinghe also accused the current CB Governor of campaigning to be the Common Candidate at the next presidential election. He also warned the CB governor not to announce ‘false information about the country’s debt situation’, and directly accused the CB governor of lying over debt figures.

  Former CB governor Indrajith Coomaraswamy too jumped into the fray, invited by various oratorical platforms to whitewash his role in the current meltdown. Also, that perennial always-former Deputy Governor WAW Wijewardena has come out to bat for the current IMF posterboy governor. Wijewardena was recently seen with the envoy from US-colonized Korea, who sponsored a seminar, hoping to reproduce the ‘Miracle on the Han River’ by the Kelani. We wonder if Sri Lanka sponsors seminars on the divided Korean economy in Seoul? Such ‘export’ miracles require US military bases.

‘We emphasise the need to reintroduce the Central Bank Act

which was proposed in 2018 when the current President was Prime Minister

to enable an independent Central Bank,

prioritise price stability and

limit the monetisation of the fiscal deficit.’

– Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC); see ee Economists, Ceylon Chamber

Sri Lanka’s parliament has no authority over the entire money in the country

although it has the power and responsibility for public money

as the Central Bank is the monetary authority

with the power over the country’s finance

to determine interest rates and control inflation’

– CB Governor Nandalal Weerasinghe

  Last week, CB Governor Weerasinghe denied he was still on the IMF’s payroll. This week, the CB governor announced a new CB law, which he attributed to the IMF’s demand for ‘prior actions’ before the US Treasury loosens the IMF’s parsimonious purse strings. The new law, Weerasinghe promised, includes clauses to legalize ‘flexible inflation targeting’. He said members of the monetary board will be appointed by an unelected ‘Constitutional Council’ (whoever that is) ‘replacing the current system of the Finance Minister making appointments.’ He added: the CB’s ‘ability to finance the budget deficit will be taken out’. Flexible inflation targeting regime will be recognized in the law as the framework… and also place ‘macro-prudential surveillance formally under the bank’, with ‘2 governing boards, one for the management of the agency and one to conduct monetary policy’. – economynext.com/sri-lanka-new-cb-law-to-cabinet-soon-as-imf-prior-action-104498/

• The UN’s International Labor Organization (ILO) in Geneva is well aware that in the ‘Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka’ freedom of association and the rights of collective bargaining are not guaranteed ‘in law and practice’ for the vast majority of its workers in the rural, urban and plantation sectors.

  In May 1980 unions launched a major campaign to prevent the UNP government from denouncing the ILO Convention No. 89, prohibiting such work, to which Sri Lanka had been bound up to then. However, the ILO this week was seen cavorting with the Employers Federation of Ceylon (EFC), which sees Sri Lanka’s labor legislation as past expiry date! The EFC in July 1980 demanded the government sack 10,000s of workers. The subsequent turmoil was then diverted towards escalating terrorism north and south So what was the ILO doing with the Chamber of Commerce recently (see Random Notes).

• Sri Lanka will face huge energy scarcities, when the ban on ‘European’ services to ship, finance or insure Russian oil shipments to destinations outside the EU kicks offon December 5, to pushtheir rather selective embargo on Russian oil imports.

  The EU, G7 and Australia will also ban companies that provide shipping insurance, brokering services, or financing for oil exports from Russia to third countries. Global shipping & insurance companies are mostly based in Europe. Most tankers transporting Russian oil are Greek-owned. And London is home to the world’s biggest maritime insurance companies.

  The English media blames Russia for the current escalation in oil prices. Yet, it is the US and European sanctions that cut Russia off from financial markets, making oil, its biggest export, essential to financing its security. The US and EU now claim they wish to avert fuel shortages, which would force prices up and compound a cost-of-living crisis around world. Ha! (Random Notes)

• With the IMF holding a gun to its head, SriLankan Airlines announces it will lease 11 more airplanes. SriLankan Airlines does not own a single aircraft and currently maintains 24 leased aircraft.

  ee wishes to point again at German industry’s published anxieties about buying US fighter jets and helicopters. It is not that these Junkers abhor war and prefer peace. (Colonized by US military bases who earlier channelled their bellicosity) Germany (& Japan) are now rearming at Mach speeds. German concerns are due to ‘the absence of any maintenance rights or domestic manufacturing of the parts of the aircraft’. We wonder if any of our so-called ‘industrialists’ and ‘entrepreneurs’ would dare make such demands on the machines we import? We wonder if the Goethe Institute would pay artists to sing about such demands?

  German industrialists are demanding that the German Ministry of War involve them in the ‘maintenance, repair & support of these expensive aircraft’. Involving their industries would ensure profits as well as jobs. Other European nations that have ordered US weapons have firmly agreed ‘on thorough consideration, maintenance, servicing, & parts production’.

   German industry says it is ‘necessary to compute the projects across the entire term of use’. For heavy-duty helicopters, just 30% of total costs would go toward acquisition, while 70% would go into maintenance over the next 30 years. ee has no doubt these weapons of mass murder will be ‘eco-friendly, diverse & inclusive’!  – eurasiantimes.com/germanys-hasty-purchase-of-f-35-fighters-comes-under-fire (also: Random Notes, SBD de Silva on Tech)

• ‘400 home-trained nurses declared unsuitable to work in the USA due to lack of English’ weep the headlines. The US Embassy tested and denied entry to these ‘narrow’ Sinhala-only workers. English media need English readers. So the story unleashed the usual nattering and gnashing of elocuting English teeth.

  This ee reports on the actual conditions of health workers in North America, and why the US & Canada are in desperate need of nurses, etc., whose jobs are being ‘fissured’ into being misclassified as ‘independent contractors’, without workers’ rights. The Covid pandemic saw more Filipino nurses die in the US than in the Philippines, and white workers refusing to work in such conditions. So why is US Envoy Julie Chung in a hurry to push these workers into the abyss? Health workers, nurses (& doctors too) are slowly being stripped of their rights. Envoys in Oman are not the only pimps (ee Random Notes).

‘Doing Nothing is Impossible’ – Welfare is the penance the rich pay for refusing to develop the economy. Yet the President this week took to reinforcing the classic media myth that it’s lazy & thieving workers who are responsible for our economic malaise. Media headlines splashed: Sri Lanka’s Samurdhi welfare scheme should only benefit those in need: president; Ranil says no more Samurdhi for the ineligible. (ee Workers). Yet the real welfare is to the multinationals and their agents who, not just hoard their profits and dollars outside the country and invest in their own industrial power, but also prevent real investment in Sri Lanka.

• Most of the goals scored are by stolen Africans at football’s so-called World Cup (a world that excludes most of the world: like US baseball’s World Series & cricket’s World Cup). These stolen Africans play for (West) European and (North, Central & South) American teams. Players are poached from African teams as well as from ‘refugee camps’.

  These African players may end up representing their own countries, yet they spend most of their time playing at European clubs, and spend little time training with their own national teams. The ‘nation’ only occurs on vacation. Another symbol of imperialism at work. And play.


A1. Reader Comments

• Sri Lanka’s School of Economic Warfare •  Rothschild Loves Elephants • Mahathir also Pro-US • Name Plantations Stealing Dollars

A2. Quotes of the Week

• Ranil Identifies Aragala Diesel • Chambers Want Independent Central Bank • Politicians Now Blame CB Default • Times Revises Diem Death • Johnson & Johnson’s Deadly Talcum Powder • US Sanctions & Boston Strangler • More Die in Winter • US Boots in Ukraine • Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs] is the New Opium • Smallholding & Science

A3. Random Notes

• Minister’s Daughters’ Oxygen for Officials • SBD de Silva on Tech Game • Rubber & Underdevelopment • EU & US Choke Oil Supply • Sinhala Nurses Unfit for USA • Fall of Industry & the Rise of US Healthcare • ILO hits Workers’ Rights • The Plan to Steal National Industries • SL Economic Association’s Balancing Act • India’s List of SL Dreams • Green Opium for Banks • Privatizing Health in India

B. ee Focus       

B1. Trade Unions Call to Repatriate Illicit Capital Outflows & Residual Export incomes Immediately

B2. Greek Wisdom for Lankan Meltdown – Sumudu Chamara on Yanis Varoufakis

B3. The Loadstar Case Study – Bram Nicholas, Howard Nicholas, & Sheran Fernando

B4. Are China & Russia imperialist? – Shiran Illanperuma

C. News Index

…continued on: eesrilanka.wordpress.org

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