Being mindful at work place
In performing one's duties in the work place it is useful to always
be mindful of what is done by self. It helps the person to act correctly
by being conscious on the continuous performance. Mindfulness, the Lord
Buddha preached could be used in our day to day activities to prevent
from doing incorrect actions and misbehaviour ie. Akusala Karma
introduced here as Raga, Dosa and Moha.
Limitless desire causes a lot of damage to our lives. Everybody likes
to be blessed with gains and praises although it doesn't happen always.
A person is motivated by accomplishing his desires one by one. There
may be a sort of strong affection towards an objective or somebody.
Failure to fulfil the aspirations connected to that, he gets anger,
depression or ill-fame. Some times these bad effects/disappointments
will lead to violent activities.
If the person is mindful of being aware of the things that are
happening, he can easily understand the cause behind as to why he or she
acts/reacts in a vulgar manner.
Today we come across a lot of problems/discriminations in our work
places due to this type of limitless desires of the mankind. There won't
be a difference between a top level officer or a bottom level employee
when these ill thoughts are cultivated.
If the person could realize the cause and effect and if he is mindful
irrespective of the level he belongs to, it will be easy to evade from
the violent situation.
We can see there are few people may be uneducated, but having good
understanding/qualities who are able to survive with the contemporary
Everything is happening due to misdirection of mind, body and word.
What the man should do is to control himself in wild thinking,
misbehaviour and bad utterance described in Buddha's preaching. Good
conduct/discipline which is expected from everyone in the work place
goes parallel with the controlling of mind, body and word according to
When we harbour good qualities and be mindful, automatically there
will be good results.
It always affects our official life. Irrespective of the position
someone holds the result of the action goes behind the person with or
without his knowledge although he refuses its repercussions.
Anger (Dosa) come with jealous. A lot of damages occur due to this
evil thoughts. Everybody has a feeling of jealousy. But ego can control
it without being harmful to anyone's progress. Discipline directs the
person to analyze the consequence of any action. If he is mindful he can
come to a conclusion why this has happened and it gives room for him to
accept, whatever the result he gained.
That is due to self controlling of developed mind/thoughts. Today we
face lot of problems and difficulties as the man does not like to accept
the defeat or loss. Lord Buddha taught us to accept Eight Universal
Conditions and no body can go away from that.
When things are happening according to the above doctrine people do
not want to realize that. That is the biggest mistake we all do.
In most of the work places there may be lot of hindrance for one's
That will come in so many ways, as trying to stimulate someone
through indirect action or by words, sometimes trying to provoke to come
out with bad behaviour.
The intellectual is able to perceive the sort of germs spreading
around him. If some one is unable to identify those, he will definitely
will be in trouble which leads to disciplinary action against him.
The man should be intelligent enough to judge the others motives that
will prevent he being in trouble. It will help him to survive with good
Person could be influenced in any sort of affection due to his
ignorance, leading him to foolish/harmful actions. Whatever position he
or she may be, will tend to do any misconduct ignoring its effects.
Knowing the gravity of the foolish action and its repercussions he will
have to suffer not only in this life but also at any time in samsara.
Nobody can escape from the consequences of the things/actions he does
whether it is good or bad. Against self conscious can do many things,
but should expect its real harvest.
When person acts without being mindful he will loose not only his
status at the work place, but also the other objects that are
People will tend to hate him gradually. And he himself becomes
unpopular through his cruel and foolish actions which reflect on his
face. Although the man pretends that he is a devoted religious
character, by getting close to monks, temples and performing other
religious activities such as observing Sil, meditation etc. his real
qualities will erupt when he faces a problem or loses something
He goes behind anyone or do any unethical thing for the things done
in his favour. When the power of such a person is lost what will be his
He/she will be just a person who collected lot of sins with anger and
jealous. Can he leave the work place with a peaceful mind? What has
he/she gained for this life or for next birth? Of course nothing.
Therefore we all must think that we should always be mindful not only
at our work places but also at every moment to gain good harvest in our
lives, by keeping away Raga, Dosa and Moha to some extent.
Ceylon Chamber to enhance trade with Jordan, Kuwait
The CCC having identified Jordan and Kuwait as potential markets for
Sri Lankan products has initiated a mission to these two emerging
The Mission will be organised in association with the Sri Lankan
Embassies in Jordan and Kuwait and will take place from November 22 to
The main objectives are to strengthen trade ties, establish business
links, source suitable business partners in the areas of Trade,
Investment, Joint Ventures, technology transfer and services.
The highlights will be meetings with the business communities and
Chambers of Commerce in Jordan and Kuwait which will offer opportunities
for our mission members to have direct dialogue with their business
The balance of trade between Sri Lanka and Jordan as well as Sri
Lanka and Kuwait have been in favour of Sri Lanka for the past three
Main export products to Jordan are black/herbal tea, sewing thread
(synthetic), fresh coconuts, desiccated coconut, coir fibre, rubber and
rubber products (tyres, tubes, gloves etc.), garments,
tableware/kitchenware, ceramic products, cut flowers and foliage, food
products (jams, biscuits, pasta, preserved vegetables,
preserved/prepared fish, sauces etc.), coir fibre carpets, toiletries
and felt tipped/stylograph pens.
CB strategies to cushion export prices decline
Considering the recent sharp decline in export prices, prospects of
lower export demand due to a likelihood of further slowing down in the
global economy and the recent sharp appreciation of the US dollar
against most major international currencies, the Central Bank of Sri
Lanka has decided to allow the rupee exchange rate against the US dollar
to respond with greater flexibility, when compared to the very stable
level that was maintained during the recent past.
This move is particularly necessitated by the fact that the
currencies of some of Sri Lanka's major trading partners and competitors
have, since mid September 2008, depreciated sharply against the US
dollar leading to some pressure on the competiveness of Sri Lanka's
exports. While Sri Lanka's export sector has been growing well above 12
per cent during the first eight months of 2008, and has shown
commendable resilience in the light of the current unfavourable global
conditions, it is now considered desirable that an added support be
granted in order to provide the impetus for the exports to remain
competitive in the months ahead.
At the same time, the Central Bank of Sri Lanka recognises the vital
importance of maintaining stability of the financial markets, in both
the foreign exchange and rupee markets, even in the face of the current
global financial crisis. Therefore, as a measure of reducing pressure on
the real sectors, the Central Bank would favour a limited depreciation
of the Sri Lanka Rupee so as to enable the real sector to maintain Sri
Lanka's export competitiveness across all export and import competing
As a result, the export sector could continue to perform well in the
future while of course taking the necessary measures to improve their
productivity and cost effectiveness in order to further enhance their
competitiveness in global markets.
The envisaged limited depreciation is also timely since it will not
adversely affect the declining trend in Sri Lanka's inflation as global
prices of petroleum, gas, wheat, sugar, milk powder, etc are declining
and this trend is expected to continue during the next few months as
well. In addition, the move will help to contain inflation in the medium
term, since there would be a lesser likelihood of higher fiscal deficits
in the medium to longer term, as this measure may reduce the need to
provide fiscal subsidies to the export sector.
In order to ensure the financial market stability, the Central Bank
stands ready to provide liquidity to maintain stability of the exchange
rate if the rate tends to be more volatile than warranted. Further, as
in the recent past, the Central Bank will continue to monitor the
developments carefully and respond promptly with timely interventions
ensure economic stability, and to mitigate the impact of any external
shocks arising from turbulence in global financial markets.
China's animal feed tainted with melamine
Animal feed producers in China commonly add the industrial chemical
melamine to their products to make them appear higher in protein, state
media reported Thursday, an indication that the scope of the country's
latest food safety scandal could extend beyond milk and eggs.
The practice of mixing melamine into animal feed is an "open secret"
in the industry, the Nanfang Daily newspaper reported in an article that
was republished on the Web sites of the official Xinhua News Agency and
the Communist Party mouthpiece People's Daily.
Publicizing such a problem is rare in the Chinese media and appears
to be a tacit admission by China's central government that melamine
contamination is widespread.
The news comes after four brands of Chinese eggs were found to be
contaminated with melamine, which agriculture officials have speculated
came from adulterated feed given to hens.
The discovery of the tainted eggs followed on the heels of a similar
crisis involving compromised dairy products that sent tens of thousands
of children to the hospital and was linked to the deaths of four
infants. That scandal was triggered by dairy suppliers who added
melamine, a chemical used to make plastics and fertilizer, to
watered-down milk in order to dupe quality control tests and make the
product appear rich in protein.
Health experts say ingesting a small amount of melamine poses no
danger, but in larger doses, it can cause kidney stones and lead to
It is forbidden to deliberately add melamine to food and animal feed,
but its apparent prevalence highlights the inability of authorities to
keep the food production process clean of toxins despite official vows
to raise safety standards.
The Ministry of Agriculture and the General Administration of Quality
Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine did not immediately respond to
faxed requests for comment. Phones rang unanswered at the Ministry of
Chemical plants used to pay companies to treat and dispose of excess
melamine, but about five years ago began selling it to manufacturers who
repackaged it as "protein powder," the Nanfang Daily report said, citing
an unnamed chemical industry expert. Melamine is high in nitrogen, and
most protein tests test for nitrogen levels.
The inexpensive powder was first used to give the impression of
higher protein levels in aquatic feed, then later in feed for livestock
and poultry, the report said.
"The effect far more exceeds the milk powder scandal," the newspaper
In the past week, melamine has been discovered in at least four
brands of Chinese eggs, and officials in China's largest city, Shanghai,
said they had begun checks on all eggs sold in local markets.
"We are closely following the development of the egg scandals in the
nation and will carry out effective measures accordingly," said Gu
Zhenhua, an official from the city Food and Drug Administration was
quoted as saying in Thursday's editions of the Shanghai Daily. No one
has been sickened and it was not immediately clear how many eggs have
been recalled. AP
'Vehicle emissions and new regulations' seminar concludes
The National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka recently concluded a
seminar on "Vehicle emissions standards and new rules and regulations on
motor vehicles" to a fully packed audience at the Chamber Auditorium
The presenters were from the Ministry of Environment, Commissioner of
Motor Traffic and Chief Medical Officers of Colombo Municipal Council
and two authorised companies for vehicle emission testing.
The President NCCSL D. Eassuwaren, Director, Ministry of Environment
and Natural Resources, Anura Jayathileke, Dep. Commissioner, Motor
Traffic, R.P.R. Rajapakse, Chief Medical Officer, CMC, Dr. Pradeep
Kariyawasam, Deputy CMO, CMC Dr. Ruwan Wijemuni and Deputy Secretary
General, NCCSL Kumara Kandalama were also presented at the seminar.
Construction Chamber Solicits Government Support to Promote Exports
Chamber of Construction Industry Sri Lanka (CCI) facilitated the
first ever construction industry trade mission to promote export of
construction related professionals services and construction industry
capacities from Sri Lanka in November 2007.
This delegation which visited the State of Qatar and Dubai was
jointly led by Prof. G L Peiris, Minister of Export Development and
International Trade and Dr. Rajitha Senaratne, Minister of Construction
and Engineering Services. A follow up visit to the State of Qatar was
undertaken in February 2008.
Consequent to these visits, a number of professional service
providers have succeeded in obtaining consultancy assignments and
outsourcing opportunities while some of the major civil and MEP
contractors have ventured into the State of Qatar by establishing joint
ventures with Qatari companies.
Nevertheless, Chamber recognizes that entering the construction
market in the Asian Region in an era of extreme competition will remain
a challenge and a large number of constraints and barriers will require
dismantling. CCI in its capacity as the accredited representative of the
principal stakeholders of the construction industry wishes to be
officially recognized as the focal point for promotion of export of
construction related professional services from Sri Lanka.
The Chamber solicits financial assistance from the Government of Sri
Lanka to undertake this exercise and launch a series of initiatives
which are so necessary to ensure that domestic construction companies
are made ready to enter the overseas market.
Opportunities that exist not only in GCC countries but also in Asian
Region must be vigorously explored to place the Sri Lankan construction
industry on the regional map, an exercise that cannot be accomplished
without tangible support from the Government. With the domestic
Information Technology applications in construction project management
and adoption of proven Quality Management Systems among others, the
Chamber has carried out a series of programmes to facilitate ISO
accreditation and transfer of ICT.
Chamber believes that the competitive position of the construction
industry will depend on relevant sectors of the industry embracing an
The construction boom in the Gulf region has reached staggering
heights with many iconic building and other projects worth more than UDS
2.4 Trillion being undertaken.
Currently, the value of active construction projects within the GCC
countries exceeds USD 1 Trillion out of which Kuwait accounts for USD
211 Billion, Saudi Arabia over USD 200 Billion and the UAE more than USD
221 Billion while Qatar which is the fastest growing economy in the
region and the Sultanate of Oman having multiple construction projects
also contributing in no small measure to the Gulf Boom. With some of the
most innovative projects underway, analysts expect the construction and
real estate sectors to remain upbeat.
Sri Lankan professionals numbering in the tens of thousands have no
doubt earned the highest respect and are most sought after in the Gulf
region. They have taken the lead role in mega development projects such
as airport development in the Gulf. In this scenario, entry of Sri
Lankan professional service providers and constructors to the Gulf
market is a distinct possibility.
However, traditionally, to do business in the Gulf, you need to build
up strong linkages and close ties and bonds with industry stakeholders
and clients in these markets which is a task that cannot be achieved
through one-off visits. Relationships established through MOUs and
partnering arrangements by the Construction Chamber with its
counterparts in the Gulf need to be strengthened through regular visits.
In this respect, CCI has already entered into a MOU with the Qatar
Chamber of Commerce and Industry and has even initiated an alliance with
Doha Bank, the Arab Bank of the Year 2007.
We need to monitor construction industry opportunities in the Gulf,
develop market intelligence and continuously nurture exiting
relationships while forging new alliances.
Sri Lankan enterprises that have secured contacts and business leads
must be provided with support services and industry personnel at all
levels must be subjected to training and continuous professional
If prioritized attention of the Government is focused on export of
construction related professional services and contracting capacities
from Sri Lanka, billions of Rupees in foreign exchange could be earned
while generating a large number of meaningful employment opportunities
for construction industry personnel at all levels. Chamber is confident
that an internationally competitive domestic construction industry could
be created placing Sri Lanka on the Global map as a reliable source of
Changing the image of Sri Lanka in the eyes of the world from that of
a provider of manual labour to that of a high quality professional
service provider is within our reach. Such an exercise will
simultaneously enhance the capacities and competitiveness of the
domestic construction industry which could become the main driver of
The need to employ foreign consultants and contractors will diminish,
projects of national importance will be completed on time and a large
number of indirect cost- benefits will accrue.
Chamber will make a fervent appeal to the Government of Sri Lanka to
provide high priority for promotion of export of construction related
professional services, an exercise that requires prominent participation
of the private sector.