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Sri Lanka to change inflation index COLOMBO: Sri Lanka will change the basket of items in its inflation index and broaden coverage to the whole nation from just the capital city, the state-run statistics office said on Wednesday. Officials said the index change the third in seven years had long been in the works. However, the move also comes at a time when the country's economic data has faced scrutiny, with calls for revisions from the International Monetary Fund and complaints about official statistics from opposition politicians. "The current index does not reflect the whole country," D.C.A. Gunawardena, head of the Department of Census and Statistics, told Reuters. "It represents only 17 percent of the Sri Lankan population." He said the changes will be made this year and the base year for calculating the consumer price index will be 2010. The current Colombo Consumer Price Index (CCPI) ...

Development ravages Malaysia's 'Little England' TANAH RATA: On a Malaysian ridge-top, R. Ramakrishnan scans a rugged landscape famed in British colonial times as a fresh-aired slice of England in the tropics, but he sees a paradise lost.Illegal farms covered in unsightly plastic sheeting stretch into the distance along the steep slopes of the Cameron Highlands as bulldozers mow down nearby forests."Everyone is grabbing land. There is a free-for-all," the local environmental activist said as chainsaws growled.Perched more than 1,000 metres ...
North Korea to hold parliamentary vote in March SEOUL: North Korea announced Wednesday elections to its rubber-stamp parliament in March, the first under leader Kim Jong-Un as he seeks to cement his grip on power after purging his uncle.The presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly (SPA) decided the election -- held every five years -- would take place on March 9, the North's official KCNA news agency said. The last parliamentary vote -- a highly staged process with only one approved candidate standing ...
Japan scrambles jets against China plane TOKYO: Japan scrambled fighter jets on Tuesday to head off a Chinese government plane flying towards disputed islands in the East China Sea, Tokyo's defence ministry said.It is the first such incident to be announced by the ministry since China created its new air defence identification zone (ADIZ) in November last year, which has stoked tensions in the region. The Chinese Y-12 propeller plane flew into Japan's own ADIZ, about 160 kilometres (99 miles) from ...
Ishihara backs sacked military chief for Tokyo governor TOKYO: China-baiting former Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara on Tuesday threw his weight behind the political ambitions of an ex-military chief who was sacked after insisting Japan was not a World War II aggressor.The acerbic Ishihara, 81, who was governor of Tokyo for 13 years to 2012, said he believed the next leader of the metropolis should be fellow hardline nationalist Toshio Tamogami, the onetime chief of staff of Japan's Air Self-Defence.Tamogami was fired from the ...
China coal mine accidents kill 1,049 in 2013 BEIJING: Accidents in Chinese coal mines killed 1,049 people last year, down 24 percent from 2012, authorities said, reflecting both risks and improvements in the country's thriving and often under-regulated sector.China is the world's largest consumer of coal and its mining industry sometimes skirts safety regulations, although authorities have shut small operations in recent years to try to improve conditions. Accidents left 1,049 people dead or missing in 2013, the central government said on its ...
14 killed in China mosque stampede BEIJING: Fourteen people were killed and 10 injured in a stampede during a gathering at a mosque in northwest China's Ningxia region, state media reported Monday.The stampede occurred around 1:00 pm Sunday while traditional food was being handed out to people attending an event to commemorate a late religious leader, Xinhua news agency said, citing the local government.The injured were hospitalised with four in critical condition, the brief report said.An investigation was under way into ...

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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.703 bln
Exports $2.156 bln
Imports $3.859 bln
WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
Reserves $15.944 bln