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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 113

Eighth SAARC Trade Fair to promote regional trade and exports

By Quintus Perera - Asian Tribune

Colombo, 03 September, ( Tariq Sayeed, President, SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry along with Prof G L Peiris, Minister of Export Development and International Trade inaugurated recently the 8th SAARC Trade Fair organized by the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka, at the BMICH with all its glamour and pomp.

Speaking at the inaugural ceremony Mr Sayeed requested the business community of SAARC Member States to promote trade and exports through regularly organizing fairs and exhibitions as they are instrumental in promoting trade and exports. However, he specifically urged upon the organizers of Trade Fairs that such events should not be meant for earning profits but should be focused on building effective partnerships and forging new alliances for development.

He appreciated the organizers for their splendid efforts to promote trade within the region by organizing SAARC trade fair and said that the member countries of the region have been showing great interest in SAARC Trade fair, which was reflected from their high level of participation and the goods displayed at different stands would attract a large number of visitors who will not only build effective linkage between the importers and exporters but also arouse desire of consumers through spot sales.

Nawaz Rajabdeen welcoming the guests said that all SAARC nations are bound by a common legacy and our vision is to achieve economic growth, provide and opportunity foe less endowed nations within the fold in particular, to achieve greater heights of economic advancement. He said that over the centuries the structure of trade fairs has undergone many revolutions and they have spread the world over. Trade fairs are today sophisticated promotional events with considerable ramification.

Prof G.L. Peiris said that in the SAARC region there is a population of 1.4 billion people and if they could reflect on ways and means to fulfill their social and economic needs and there should be instruments at their disposal to fulfill them. He said that in finding such avenues they are no longer depending on philanthropists of the developed world as they have their own resources – the most valuable of it all – the human resource, added to that the structure and a collective approach.

They are the key to progress. He said to achieve these goals, major financial, industrial and trade modalities are being pursued.

He said that they are equipped with bilateral agreements between countries and secondly there is also the instrument of multilateral agreements among the countries. They are used to achieve the desired goals and which bring in prosperity to one and a half billion people.

He said that there are also certain values that they share among the Regional Countries and these values provide a solid foundation to form a durable and lasting relationship. He said that while they wanted to increase GDP and at the same time to ensure that the economic benefits achieved should have to trickle down to the lowest strata of the society.

Prof Peiris acknowledged the services of the business community towards trade promotion which has helped poverty alleviation and promotion of jobs. He regarded fairs and exhibitions as an effective tool to materialize economic cooperation in true perspective and hoped that the continuation of these events will bring business community together and helped achieved the targets envisaged under SAFTA.

To ensure success of the SAARC Trade Fair. Department of Commerce, Export Development Board, Board of Investment, Sri Lanka Customs, Sri Lanka Tourist Board, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Export Promotion have also joined hands with the FCCISL.

The SAARC Trade Fair is open to the business community and the general public and on all three days it is open from 9 am to 9 pm. This unique event is expected to attract a large number of visitors who will include entrepreneurs, buyers, producers, state officials, policy makers, academia and a host of other stakeholders who promote mutual relations and cooperation within the South Asian Region.

The theme of this year’s event “Regional opportunities for Global Growth” will focus on the importance of harnessing strengths available within the SAARC region to jointly emerge as a regional force in seizing the global opportunities that could lead to socio-economic development in the region.

- Asian Tribune -

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