‘India-Sri Lanka bilateral trade has scope for growth’

Need to create an optimal supportive framework, says Sri Lanka Deputy High Commissioner

The Deputy High Commissioner of Sri Lanka in Southern India V. Krishnamoorthy on Wednesday said there is a growing interest among Indian and Sri Lankan companies to invest in each other’s market.

“However, more needs to be done to create an optimal supportive framework in this regard,” he said, addressing members of the Federation of Telangana Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FTCCI) here.

Underscoring the need for concerted efforts in moving the bilateral trade to a higher level through more quality engagement, Mr. Krishnamoorthy said trade and industry bodies such as FTCCI had a role to play in strengthening linkages between the two countries. He urged FTCCI to consider taking a business delegation to explore Sri Lanka next year. It had done so about ten years ago.

Promotion of closer linkages between the business communities of the two countries will certainly accumulate tangible benefits to both sides.

He said this while adding “a fresh look at the current pattern of Indo-Sri Lanka trade relations is the need of the hour to see how best we together can change it to enhance benefit for our two nations.”

On the bilateral trade, he said with the signing of FTA in 1998 between the two countries, imports from India had increased manifolds. Exports from India, to Sri Lanka, had increased from $600 million in 2001 to $4495 million in 2018. There is considerable potential to increase Sri Lanka's export from the existing $712 million and to expand bilateral trade through facilitation measures and optimal utilisation of the agreements between the two countries, he added.

Noting that tourist arrivals from India up to July this year was 1.75 lakh, a decline of 15% compared to the same period in 2018, he said the drop in the numbers was on account of the Easter bomb blasts in Colombo in April. “[The] Sri Lankan government has launched different initiative to expedite the recovery of the tourism... it is a safe place to visit now,” he said.

According to a FTCCI release, Mr.Krishnamoorthy said “we look forward to collaborate with the government of Telangana in IT/BPO space”.

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Printable version | Feb 24, 2020 12:44:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/india-sri-lanka-bilateral-trade-has-scope-for-growth/article29780617.ece

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