e-Con e-News

Japan Yanks SriLankan Airlines


IMF, World Bank are not democratic spaces…

blog: eesrilanka.wordpress.com

Before you study the economics, study the economists!

e-Con e-News 25 September – 01 October 2022

An Island editorial this week exposed – perhaps inadvertently – Japan’s sudden sumo moves in Sri Lanka:

Japan is trying to further the interests of the strategic forum, QUAD

(Quadrilateral Security Dialogue), as a member,

by intervening to enable Sri Lanka to manage its debt,

sort out its economy and lessen its dependence on China.

It has also been claimed that 2 other QUAD members,

India & the US, are also actively involved in helping

straighten up Sri Lanka’s ailing economy as part of their strategy

to counter China’s growing influence in the region.

(see ee Economists, An Appeal to Japan)

Japan & the Asian Development Bank (which Japan controls) took a prominent role this week in boosting the Colombo Stock Exchange. President Ranil Wickremesinghe, in a fit of candor, recently called the CSE too ‘rigged’. He was referring to the renewed efforts to sell off national assets under the guise of getting rid of ‘loss-making State-owned Enterprises (SoEs)’ by throwing them to the wolves at the CSE.

     The news mentions, Japan’s SG Holdings owns ‘the number one entity’ in the ‘rigged’ Colombo Stock Exchange. The news does not mention Japan also owns Aberdeen Holdings Group’s FitsAir. FitsAir this week announced ‘international passenger operations’. Fits will be run by white ‘expat’ Peter Hill, ‘former CEO at SriLankan Airlines when it was under Emirates management & ran the now loss-making airline profitably.’ Ahem!!

     The news also does not mention Aberdeen’s Fits Express was established as the ‘authorized service contractor’ for US shipping company, UPS Sri Lanka.

     The ‘accidental’ President has nevertheless been busy flying SriLankan Airlines (we hope) West and then East (but not ‘too East’). He visited a dead English Queen and an almost-dead English King, US colony Japan’s still-alive Emperor Hirohito, Philippines Bong Bong (son of Ferdinand) Marcos, and even chaired the Asian Development Bank’s annual carnival. And lo! a ‘rigged’ stock market stood up erect and took notice of all this (see ee Random Notes, Japan)

• The US is turning the Pacific Islands ‘into cannon-fodder for its own interests’, writes China’s CGTN. ‘A great deal of the history of our world is going to be written in the Indo-Pacific over the coming years and decades. And the Pacific Islands are a critical voice in shaping that future,’ US President Joe Biden stated at the first US-Pacific Island Country Summit in Washington DC on September 29, 2022.

• India, China, Gabon and Brazil abstained on a UNSC resolution condemning Russia. Despite the US media’s tagging of the war as an ‘unprovoked invasion by Russia’, former Indian envoy MK Bhadrakumar said the present war ‘ensues from the violent coup staged by US to grab power in Kiev in 2014 so as to create an anti-Russia proxy state. US interests are not affected by the happenings in Ukraine, which is 10,000km away from its shores. But, for Russia, Ukraine is not only an existential issue but also the cradle of its civilization – inseparable. Like Nepal is for India.’  What this says about Sri Lanka, is indeed a matter to ponder.

• Just as the US and its NATO underlings perpetrated a terrorist attack on submarine pipeline NordStream in the Baltic Sea, the local media reported US envoy Julie Chung and her Economic Unit Head Phillip Loosli  ‘recently’ visited ‘South Asia’s First Submarine Cable Depot, noting, ‘all submarine cables from Europe to Asia & Far East run within close reach of Galle’.

     The nominally SLT-MOBITEL Galle Submarine Cable Depot is a joint venture with Indian Ocean Cable Ship owned by Singapore Telecom and France’s Orange Marine. It’s unclear exactly how much control Sri Lanka has over the depot let alone SL Telecom. SLT is cited as a success story of privatization. The truth is of course the exact opposite. It represents another example of the handover of Sri Lanka’s sovereignty to multinationals (Japan’s NTT, US AT&T, etc). 

     What message does the US envoy wish to send by signaling the release of this latest information? Is it another message that, unless the government submits, serious consequences may ensue? ‘The cable repair ship Asian Restorer is stationed in Galle…The strategic location of the Depot enables swift submarine cable repair and maintenance work in the region…’

ee reproduces excerpts from The End of a Corporate Giant –  the Story of Walker Sons & Co, by

Hugh Karunanayake. The rendition is illuminating for showing how English ownership over important sectors of Sri Lanka’s economy continued long after Soulbury Independence in 1948.

The author does not mention Walker’s vital umbilical link to the monopoly Peninsular & Orient Co, whose engineering work it carried out. P&O set up the Ceylon Wharfage Company to do the cargo handling for ships, for their imports & exports in the Colombo Port. P&O’s Mackinnon Mackenzie did shipping agency work. Engineering firm Walkers, originally the Marine Engineering Co, serviced the ships.

Karunanayake mentions the role of Walker’s in ‘manufacturing machinery’, but fails to note why it did not become a truly ‘industrial’ venture by incorporating upstream & downstream production of supplies (steel, etc) and distribution (ships, etc) to lead to other industrial ventures inside the country. Instead Walker’s ended up just another import-export mafia agent.

‘Rather than being elected, the leaders of the World Bank (& IMF)

are appointed by the US & Europe, one result being,

the leaders appointed to the WB are always from the US

(while leaders appointed to IMF are always European).

Moreover, the entire voting system of the World Bank is skewed

towards the domination of the US, Europe and other developed countries

and the subordination of developing countries…

The largest vote holders are the G7 countries

–US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, England

– while middle- & low-income countries,

which represent approximately 85% of the world’s population,

have approximately 40% of the vote.’

ee Economists, Africom Watch Bulletin #41

Blocked by the gatekeepers of knowledge, SBD de Silva, to whom this blog is dedicated, travelled the world, historically and geographically, to find clues to the political economy of underdevelopment, to particularly illuminate what is happening to Sri Lanka. Zimbabwe as Rhodesia was vital to his thesis on the different economies allowed in settler and non-settler colonies. This ee highlights the destruction of the ‘largest steel plant in the world’s southern hemisphere, in Zimbabwe, also about the wars waged by all means to prevent industrialization.

     Many political analysts, for whom ‘West’ means white and good, use Zimbabwe (the actual ‘West’ for us) and Robert Mugabe as synonyms of dereliction and why ‘independence’ has failed. The truth reveals other greater truths: the whites are still busy trying to control the world (ee Focus).

• Having hustled the SL government into submitting to the US government’s economic dictat, the ‘IMF says timeline remains uncertain as Sri Lanka eyes December bailout’, quoting an unnamed ‘a highly placed SL diplomatic source’. Another headline: ‘Difficult to predict Sri Lanka’s bailout timeline – IMF’. The more time they take, the more indebted we are made.

     The Sinhala system of interest payment was based on simple interest. Compound interest was introduced by the English presumably on behalf of certain Muslim traders in Eastern province, who then grabbed large swathes of land there.

• This ee Focus also looks at the almost indecent rush to make the Central Bank of Sri Lanka ‘independent’ of the country’s needs. What does this independence mean? ee reproduces an excerpt on the origins of this call for ‘independence’, from economist Michael Hudson’s discussion with Ralph Nader on ‘Debt, Financial Surveillance, the Fed & More’. The excerpt begins with a discussion on debt & interest, and explains why this is the only kind of ‘independence’ that US and their funded Thinktanks, NGOS and allied poodles of US capitalists, like. Not only does it render the Central Bank independent of the SL government, it makes it dependent on private capitalists.

     This ee also focuses on the devastating effects of the recent IMF policies imposed on Zambia, despite claims by so-called ‘progessives’ that the US state-controlled IMF, which wishes to weaken our own state’s ability to run the economy, has ‘changed’. 

• The 2022 Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group (WBG) takes place Oct 10-16 in Washington DC. The People’s Republic of China celebrated their 73rd anniversary of liberation from imperialism on 01 October.

     On October 16, the US and India conduct war games on India’s northeast borders, just as China convenes the largest democratic parliament on planet earth to re-elect their leader Xi Jinping.

• Unilever-linked Capital Maharaja Group (CMG), the chemical and other import mafia agent and media moghul, is acting coy as usual. This week CMG’s florid organ NewsFirst, asked, ‘So the question is, who is the intermediary involved in the importation of fuel?’ The media loves to act as if they don’t know.

• ee is no fan of the theatre of the absurd, etc. It is yet another conceit of white culture. Only an unjust dominant force can afford to and must dispense with material cause and effect. Yet, nothing is more absurd and nothing explains the media more than its living ridiculousness. This theatre of the absurd obscures and abstracts the drama of reality. The media remains a capitalist good, and the Sri Lankan media, an imperialist product as well. Only this can explain how they hunger after the approval and maintain the narrative of the white man. How they can act as if the white man can really be the judge over us.

• Ursula Has Tools – Some may take solace that the EU threatens not just Sri Lanka, but its own as well. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was accused of trying to influence Italy’s elections. 3 days before the country’s polls, at US Princeton University, asked what she thought of a ‘right-wing’ victory in an EC member state, she replied, the EU has certain ‘tools’ that it can use against Italy if it chooses to go ‘in a difficult direction’. Von der Leyen was referring to the EU’s ‘ability to cut funds’ to nations that displease corporate Brussels: ‘I’ve spoken about Hungary & Poland – we have the tools.’ The Italian electorate apparently ignored her. Though only 60% or so of those eligible voted. 40% care even less of what she thinks.

• The US as the leader of the imperialists has decided they are willing to escalate their forever wars to nuclear wars, even sacrifice large swaths of the planet earth, including their own lands, in order to preserve the capitalist status quo. They believe they can survive in gated fortresses. They will not invest in real industrialization, which requires a highly working class. A highly skilled working class would spell their end.

     Meanwhile, the US and their UN poodles extend their intrusions into Lanka. A USAID ‘Export Barometer Survey’, with the ‘Ceylon Chamber of Commerce’ reveals ‘Pessimism looms over export sector.’

     Then there is UNICEF Representative Christian Skoog, patronizing us, ‘Developing plans and policies without youth is a futile exercise’ for ‘the sustainability of the planet and the tourism sector’! Tourism sector? What skills does tourism teach?

     Meanwhile, Japan is distributing ‘nutritional care’ though UNICEF rather than the Ministry of Health (ee Industry, UNICEF, &  UNICEF welcomes Japanese aid to SL)

     And the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Sri Lanka is  ‘channeling private sector funds’ towards procuring essential & non-essential medical supplies and address food security…The UNDP partners are Hemas Holdings, Dilmah Ceylon Tea Co, Brandix Apparel, Daraz SL, Citi Foundation, Amana Bank, Sarvodaya, UN Global Compact Network SL & oDoc. (ee Industry, Hemas). 75 Years of Soulbury Independence, here we come, or there we go!


A1. Reader Comments

•  Congratulations #4 ee • How long ee? • Color is the new white

A2. Quotes of the Week

• Sam & Julie Shift on JVP • Aunty Sam A Comedy of Terrors • Swiss or Sudan? • Pipeline Terror: US, Poland, Sweden, Danish Job • 19thC Cingalese Down Under • Archival Brainwash • NGOs as Vent • Zimbabwe Now Surrounded by US Army • UN Gangsterismin Haiti • US Fed Created for Rich Only • IMF Chief Has no Choice • US Sunset Slave Laws • Biden Vowed to Sabotage NordStream

A3. Random Notes

• Japan & the Rigged Colombo Stock Market • Majority Whites & Market Coloreds • World Bank Promises Never Kept • The Story of Walker Sons & Co. • Zimbabwe as Rhodesia & SBD de Silva

B. ee Focus       

B1. What Happened to Africa’s Biggest Iron Smelter: Zimbabwe Iron & Steel Company (ZISCO)

       – by Rutendo Bereza Matinyarare

B2. Zambia’s Debt Crisis a Warning for What Looms Ahead for Global South – Tanupriya Singh

B3. Michael Hudson Discusses Debt, Financial Surveillance, the Fed & More with Ralph Nader

C. News Index

Continued on: eesrilanka.wordpress.com

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