Wednesday, 22 February 2017 - 17:41
Sri Lanka to seek international support in improving export market


The Government announced today that it requires to improve Sri Lanka’s exports by tapping new markets.

Minister of International Trade Malik Samarawickrama informed the Parliament that Sri Lanka needs to look into new markets as the traditional markets have not helped Sri Lankan exports grow.

The Minister said that in order to achieve this Sri Lanka will be turning towards China, Singapore, Japan and Korea to improve Sri Lankan exports.

Sri Lanka is to soon sign Free Trade Agreements with China and Singapore and discussions on these deals are expected to be finalised this year.

Minister Samarawickrama went on to say that Sri Lanka will also sign a trade deal with Pakistan and an economic and technological agreement with India.

“This is the only way forward,” the Minister said as parliament discussed Sri Lanka’s exports.

Sri Lanka is hoping its exports to Europe will improve once the country obtains the GSP plus trade concession from the European Union (EU).

The EU is scheduled to decide on Sri Lanka’s application for GSP by May 15.

EU is Sri Lanka’s biggest export market which accounts for nearly one-third of Sri Lanka’s global exports. It’s Special Incentive Arrangement for Sustainable Development and Good Governance, GSP+, is part of EU’s unilateral tariff preferences in favour of developing countries.

The GSP+ scheme has been designed to help developing countries by granting full removal of tariffs on over 66% of tariff lines covering a vast array of products that include textiles and fisheries.

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