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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2400

Promoting Sri Lankan Business and Investment in Turkey: the Embassy, BOI and EDB take collective initiative

By Our Special Correspondent

The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Ankara, Turkey in collaboration with the Board of Investment (BOI) of Sri Lanka and Export Development Board (EDB) of Sri Lanka, organised a promotional programme on “Business and Investment Opportunities in Sri Lanka” from 15th to 18th May 2017 in Turkey.

The second phase of the programme, kicked off in November, last year, the two sides agreed to set an ambitious target of trade volume between the two countries to $ 500 million in a matter of four years. The recent event was organized to make a concerted effort to achieve the target in the desired time frame, while cashing in on the conducive business environment that has been growing steadily since the end of the civil war.

In order to achieve the goal, the first session of the programme was held in Istanbul. On Monday15th, May, meetings were held with the Turkish Ship and Yacht Exporters Association, Istanbul Apparel Exporters Association and Jewellery Exporters Association.

During all three meetings, Ms. Renuka Weerakone, Executive Director/Monitoring of the BOI and Ms. Anoma Premathileke , Director/Market Development of the EDB briefed the Turkish side on opportunities in Sri Lanka and on the investor friendly environment, which prevails in Sri Lanka.

The responses from the Turkish side were warm and receptive. Turkish Ship and Yacht Exporters Association requested additional specific details to further discuss Sri Lanka’s proposals with their members while the Chairperson of the Apparel Exporters Association agreed to visit Sri Lanka shortly and engage in discussions with the stake-holders of Sri Lanka’s apparel sector.


In another encouraging move, the Istanbul Jewellery Exporters Association expressed its keenness to collaborate in joint ventures involving Sri Lanka companies, which are engaged in the sector. Since Turkey is the second biggest jewellery manufacture in the World, it offers an immense trading potential to Sri Lanka’s precious and semi-precious stones.

On 16th May 2017, the Embassy partnering with Istanbul Chamber of Industry organized a seminar on “Business and Investment Opportunities in Sri Lanka”. Ambassador of Sri Lanka in Ankara, Mr. P.M. Amza and officials of the BOI and EDB made presentations on “why Sri Lanka should be chosen as a potential destination to invest in/to do business with”.

This opportunity was also taken to invite the participants of the seminar to attend ‘Investment Conclave 2017’ to be held shortly in Colombo. In addition, the Ministry of Economy of Turkey also did a presentation on “Turkish- Sri Lanka trade relations- potential and the need to enhance the same”. A panel discussion was conducted where two Turkish businessmen who have already invested in Sri Lanka explained their success stories and detailed how easy it is to start a business in Sri Lanka. They also spoke with appreciation of the assistance/ facilitation extended by local –authorities. Number of participants showing interest to consider investing in /doing business with Sri Lanka took the initiative to exchange their information and requested further details with the intent to explore the possibilities.

The Ankara chapter of the programme commenced with “Sri Lanka Business and Investment Forum “held in collaboration with the Industrialists Businesswoman and Businessmen Confederation on 17th May 2017. The participants represented members of the business and diplomatic communities, journalists, representatives of the Turkish Foreign Ministry and the Economic Ministry. The Forum was inaugurated by the Spokesperson of the Turkish Foreign Ministry, Ambassador Hüseyin Müftüo?lu. Several participants made contacts with the BOI and EDB officials with the intent to do business with Sri Lanka.

On Wednesday the 18th May 2017, a meeting was held with the Ministry of Economy of Turkey where the two sides extensively discussed of the possible avenues to expand the trade volume between the two countries. Both sides suggested several constructive approaches in this regard.

Taking into consideration that the Turkey is the 2nd largest International Contractor in the world, at a meeting held with Board Members of the Turkish Contractors Association, Turkish contractors were encouraged to invest in Sri Lanka with a special emphasis on ongoing Megapolis Projects.

The programme concluded with a meeting held at the Ankara Chamber of Industry where again the participants were comprehensively briefed and encouraged on the benefits and the potential of trading with/investing in Sri Lanka.

Ambassador Amza is hopeful that the joint effort made by Sri Lanka embassy, EDB and BOI in organizing the highly successful event, will bring Turkey on board as a significant partner in the collective exercise of attracting foreign investment and business opportunities.

- Asian Tribune -

Promoting Sri Lankan Business and Investment in Turkey: the Embassy, BOI and EDB take collective initiative
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