“This Act is truly visionary; I wish other countries had this in their export development framework!”, remarked a senior official of the Geneva-based International Trade Centre to me some months back. He was referring to the ‘Sri Lanka Export Development Act No. 40 of 1979’, which marks 40 years this month. He had found it to be an institutional arrangement that was far ahead of its time, and is still having relevance today – not just for Sri Lanka, but also for other developing countries. And he would know, having worked on export development strategies for over a dozen countries around the world.
To help Sri Lankan companies eyeing the daunting Indian market, the International Trade and Development Strategies Ministry yesterday launched a new report to assist breaking into India, with Minister Malik Samarawickrama undertaking a visit to India this week to help local businesses find success across the Palk Strait.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board [EDB] which turned 40 years on 1st August is the premier state organization for the development and promotion of exports. The Board plays myriad roles in the export sector of the economy, as a Policy Advisor, Monitor, Promoter, Facilitator and Knowledge Provider in carrying out its responsibilities of implementing strategies for achieving national export targets.
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.
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 Export Development Board together with the National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency (NARA), National Aquaculture Development Authority (NAQDA), and the Live Tropical Fish Exporters Association will conduct a three-day technology transfer program from 26-28 June in order to make aware the ornamental fish breeders, producers and exporters about the new developments in the industry.
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
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.
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.
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 22nd Presidential Export Awards Ceremony was held to celebrate the outstanding achievements of the Exporters at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) in Colombo, on September 18, 2018, under the patronage of His Excellency Maithripala Sirisena the President of Sri Lanka.
Following is the address by Minister Malik Samarawickrama at the Presidential Export Awardson 18 September
For the first time in Sri Lanka, successful captive breeding of Asian arowana (Scleropages formosus) has been recorded in the Polonnaruwa district recently. The species is considered as a high valued ornamental fish in the international market and the local market as well.
The second edition of international conference on Fisheries and Aquaculture exhibition 2015 organized by the International Institute of Knowledge Management will be held from August 25 - 26, 2015 at Hotel Galadari.
The conference is co-hosted by World Aquaculture Society, National Aquatic Resources Research and Development Agency and Export Development Board.
Sri Lanka has earned USD 7.34 billion from exports up to August this year, recording a positive growth of 14 per cent when compared to the corresponding period in 2013, said Sri Lanka Export Development Board Chairman cum Chief Executive Officer Bandula Egodage.
Addressing a gathering at the First International Ornamental Fish Trade Conference in Colombo yesterday he said despite many constraints and challenges faced by local exports domestically and internationally, the willingness shown by them to sustain continuous growth was commendable.
Sri Lanka has earned over Rs 1.2 billion last year from exporting ornamental fish and measures will be taken to double this income by 2016, the Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development Ministry says.
Sri Lanka's ornamental fish production had produced over 46,000 metric tons in 2009 and this amount has increased to nearly 70,000 metric tons last year, placing Sri Lanka in the third place in exporting ornamental fishes, according to the Ministry.
Morocco has shown keen interest to boost trade and industrial cooperation with Sri Lanka.
“We need to expand our bilateral trade as well as our industrial cooperation. Investors from both countries can also enter into joint ventures in many sectors; we are strong in rubber and fishery -technologies that Sri Lanka can benefit from us considerably,” said Moroccan Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Larbi Reffouch during his recent meeting with Industry and Commerce Minister Rishad Bathiudeen at the Export Development Board.
The growth of bilateral trade between Sri Lanka and Austria, despite the economic recession in Europe and the steady increase in direct foreign investment from Austria augur well for the future of relations between Sri Lanka and Austria, External Affairs Minister Professor G L Peiris said.
He said this during a meeting on Tuesday with Austria's Vice Chancellor (Deputy Prime Minster) and European and International Affairs Minister Dr Michael Spindelegge at the Foreign Ministry in Vienna.
The ministers noted that Austrian companies are showing increasing interest in bidding for major infrastructure development projects, while others have already undertaken construction projects in Sri Lanka, including the Greater Colombo sewerage system rehabilitation project.