Last year, the Export Development Board (EDB) could not hold the Presidential Export Awards for financial year 2019/2020 due to the outbreak of COVID-19 and therefore it was held as a combined awards scheme this year.
The Presidential Export Awards initiated in 1981, is the highest and the most prestigious award presented by the President of Sri Lanka to exporters in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the export sector and to economic development of the country.
The EDB this year, recognised and appreciated the resilience, perseverance and commitment shown by the exporters amidst a number of challenges brought on by the pandemic, and their contribution towards achieving the goal of the Government’s policy framework ‘Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour’.
New overall awards such as ‘Best Exporter in Product Diversification,’ ‘Best Value-Added Exporter of the Year,’ ‘Market Diversified Exporter of the Year,’ ‘Best Performing Exporter in Emerging Markets’ and ‘Emerging Exporter of the Year’ were introduced to the Presidential Export Awards scheme this year, in line with the national policy framework.
In total, 63 export companies were awarded during the ceremony for the past two financial years, with 12 Overall Awards and 46 Sectoral Awards for products and services. The selections for the awards were done by an eminent panel of Judges headed by a Retired Judge of the Supreme Court.
The selection of the ‘Best Exporter’ for the Product and Services Sectoral Awards was more competitive as the evaluation was not only based on export earnings, but also several other criteria, such as value addition, employment creation, market diversification, and growth of export earnings.
The 24th Presidential Exporters Awards was organised by the EDB under the leadership of Trade Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardana and the guidance and directions of EDB Chairman Suresh de Mel.