Despite global and local challenges, Sri Lanka’s merchandised and service exports have risen by 11.4% to $ 8.5 billion in the first half of this year, prompting the Government to attribute it to a series of development efforts and assure further support. Releasing the latest yet provisional data, Development Strategies and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama said yesterday that export sector performance was commendable, though he admitted there is significant scope for higher value. “The 11.4% growth, despite the impact of the October 2018 undemocratic constitutional coup, and the Easter Sunday tragedy, as well as global challenges, is very satisfactory. For the first time, three months of first half of 2019 - January, March and June - have produced over $ 1 billion worth of merchandised exports. We had originally set an ambitious $ 20 billion target for 2019, but we may miss it and end up at around $ 18.5 billion, which will be still higher than the $ 16 billion achieved last year,” Samarawickrama said.
A delegation led by Hon. Nalin Bandara, Deputy Minister of Development Strategies & International Trade comprising officials from both the public and private sector visited United Arab Emirates (UAE) and met several important trade partners in the UAE. The delegation had very fruitful discussions with the Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Sharjah Chamber of Commerce & Industry as well as Al-Maya Group and the Lulu Supermarket International.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) has been conducting the Exporters’ Forum since its inception from late 70s. The EDB has identified the need of a common platform to discuss and resolve the issues faced by the exporter community in Sri Lanka in order to facilitate exporters to overcome constraints arising from policy and operational issues created by various institutes that regulate, operate, and facilitate cross border trade. The EDB as the nation’s prime institute to facilitate export development created this mechanism to enable exporters to submit their issues to the highest levels of state institutions that cannot be reached easily by a trader. The unique feature of the Exporters’ Forum is the participation of the private sector and the public sector to resolve issues, with the political leadership represented by the relevant minister together with direct ministry-level interventions providing solutions to address those issues.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) is planning to hold the 23rd Presidential Export Awards Ceremony under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena on 19 September at the BMICH
The global wellness tourism market is expected to reach USD 1,062.83 billion by the end of 2025. The growing interests of the tourists towards the sectors such as health, travel, and foods are the factors driving the growth of the market over the forecast period. However, the rising number of tourist destinations in developing countries such as India and China have attracted more customers from the international market.
While Sri Lanka healthcare is renowned to be one of the best in the region, the recent Easter Sunday attacks highlighted a major gap in need of urgent attention – emergency delivery of lifesaving medicine to people in dire need of help. The unprecedented simultaneous bombings caused a shortage of blood, leaving hospitals scrambling to bring down blood from other areas of the country. While the country had enough blood to meet the emergency demand, it lacked an effective to move it from where it was to where it needed to be.
Transforming Sri Lanka into the hub of the Indian Ocean, with a knowledge-based, highly competitive and social-market economyis the objective of the Vision 2025 policy document of the Government.Making the transistion to anexport, FDI and tourism orientedcountry is the only optionfor Sri Lanka to create better jobs for the youth of our country and to graduate to a higher income economy.
As per the instructions of the Hon. Malik Samarawickrama, Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade, Export Development Board organized a meeting with the key Exporters and Investors on Friday 03rd May 2019 at the 3rd Floor Auditorium to discuss the current situation of the country.
Sri Lanka participated in the Arabian Travel Market (ATM 2019), the largest annual professional and official exhibition for the Tourism market in the Middle East last week.
The seventh seminar for the Vavuniya, Mullaitivu and Mannar District entrepreneurs on the national program of developing 2000 new exporters was held on 1 March at the Vavuniya district secretariat conference hall.
The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Brazil successfully organised a three-day trade and tourism promotional event in Sao Paulo, the commercial capital of Brazil, from 20 to 22 February. The event drew the interest of a large number of prominent Brazilian importers, trade consultants, officials of trade associations, travel journalists and travel trade industries based in Sao Paulo.
The World Expo is one of the oldest and largest international events taking place every 5 years and lasting for 6 month where everyone can learn, innovate and create progress by sharing ideas and working together through a common theme. United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been selected as the host country for the forthcoming event to be held in year 2020. This World Expo will be held for a period of six months from 20th October 2020 to 10th April 2021 in Dubai under the theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”. The World Expo in Dubai in 2020 will be the first to be held in the MENA & SA (Middle East and North Africa & South Asia Region.
The National Export Strategy (NES) is progressing in the right direction. It has six focused areas and is expected to provide the impetus for the export drive supporting economic growth, Chairperson of the Export Development Board (EDB), Indira Malwatte said.
Sri Lankan Wellness Tourism sector delegation has successfully concluded the participation at Arab Health Exhibition & Congress from 28-31 January 2019 by generating average 100-120 initial business contacts and out of which 75 are potential conversions. All the companies have had successful business contacts with the Travel Agents and other relevant organizations. Most of the Arab Clients have requested short holiday packages average for three four days which will be cost effective and companies are in the process of designing the packages to the identified clients. Delegation has showcased the best offerings of the Sri Lanka Wellness Tourism sector to the Arab clients & most of the travel agents and it was revealed that there is a huge potential for Sri Lanka to promote Wellness Tourism.
With the concept of wellness becoming a buzzword in the world, the tourism industry has capitalized on its potential by offering travel experiences that have health and well-being as a core component. International travellers are increasingly considering wellness when planning their holiday itinerary. With trips being organized based on concepts such as physical, psychological and spiritual wellbeing, healthy food and spa treatments.
Sri Lanka’s merchandise and service exports in 2018 are estimated to have hit an all-time high of $ 17 billion, up 15% from a year earlier prompting the Government to be confident of achieving the $20 billion milestone this year.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Embassy in Japan organized an Inward Buyer Delegation from Japan, from 3rd to 5th December 2018 with the objective of developing business linkages between Sri Lankan companies and the Japanese buyers as well as to increase awareness among Sri Lankan exporters on the Japanese market.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB), as the apex organization for promoting exports, has identified the Health/Wellness Tourism sector as a key focus sector in terms of foreign exchange earnings and as a key sector in the National Export Strategy (NES). There is a clear synergy between global trends and Sri Lanka’s traditional health approaches. The country has natural and traditional endowments that can be used to foster a sustainable wellness tourism value chain that is deeply rooted in local communities and traditions. The growing interest in and demand for wellness services is a favorable global trend for the development of this industry in Sri Lanka. Many countries and destinations are defining themselves as wellness tourism destinations but most do not have Sri Lanka’s rich cultural and wellness lifestyle based heritage. The Average spending of a wellness traveler is around US$ 250 which is far beyond the spending of a general tourist or backpackers.