Treasury Secretary Addresses the Business Community in Kandy

Dr. P. B Jayasundera, Secretary to the Treasury was the Chief Guest at the seminar on “Budget Proposals 2012 for SMEs” held on 25th November 2011 at Earl’s Regency Hotel Kundasale, Kandy. Dr Jayasundera explained the benefits and incentives offered to the business community and the public from the budget 2012. Others present were Ms Dammika Gunathileka, Tax Adviser, Ministry of Finance & Planning. Dr Neville Gunawardene, Director General, Dept of Trade & Tariff, Mr S.R. Atygalle, Director General , Public Enterprises Dept and Mrs Mallika Samarasekera, Deputy Commissioner, Inland Revenue Dept. More than 200 participants mostly SMEs, from Kandy, N’Eliya, Matale, Kurunegala and Kegalle districts participated.


National Chamber Delegation Meets the Vietnam President in Hanoi

A seventeen member business delegation from of the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (NCCSL) led by Mr. Asoka Hettigoda the President of the Chamber, met His Excellency Truong Tan Sang, the President of Vietnam at the Presidential Palace during their visit to Vietnam from 13-18 November 2011. Mr. Hettigoda explained to His Excellency Truong Tan Sang the current economic conditions, improved business and investment climate Sri Lanka enjoys presently. In return His Excellency the president informed the Sri Lanka delegates about  the very high potential both countries have for bilateral trade development and investment. Mr. Asoka Hettigoda, further said that Sri Lanka presently exports products such as woven fabrics, residues of milling industry, crepe rubber, oil seed, tea packets and tea bags etc., to Vietnam while at the same time Sri Lanka imports processed food, agricultural products, reception apparatus for televisions, agricultural machinery, cotton, marbles, man-made staple fibers, etc., from Vietnam. Present trade volume between Sri Lanka and Vietnam ranges from USD 80-100 million. It is expected to improve the existing business areas and expand in to other areas as well.

 Mr. Asoka Hettigoda also said that the NCCSL will work very hard to achieve USD 1 billion target set by the President of Sri Lanka and Vietnam when the Vietnam President visited Sri Lanka  few weeks ago.Members of the Sri Lankan delegation were keen in exploring business and investment opportunities in Vietnam in the areas of apparel and textile, electrical cables, gem and Jewellery, agricultural machinery, rubber and related products, animal feed and agro products. Both parties were interested in developing a strong relationship with regards to exchanging agricultural technology for mutual benefits. Other areas of interest were minerals & chemicals, non asbestos roofing products and medical related equipment. The representative from Sri Lanka Export Development Board explained to the Vietnam Business community about the Sri Lanka “Expo 2012”, the major exhibition of Sri Lankan products to the world. Many Vietnamese businessmen assured their participation at Sri Lanka “Expo 2012”.Apart from the meeting with the H.E President of Vietnam, the delegates also had detailed discussions with the senior officials of Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry  (VCCI), Foreign Investment Agency (FIA), Ministry of Trade and Investment and Vietnam Small Medium Industries Association. The delegates also met representatives of over 100 Vietnamese companies and had one to one business meetings.

One of the most important activities that took place at the headquarters of the VCCI was the signing of a  MOU between the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka and Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry to promote business relations, trade and investment between the two countries. The MOU was signed by Mr. Asoka Hettigoda, President of NCCSL and Mr. Hoang Van Dung, First Vice Executive President of VCCI in the presence of H.E Dr. Ivan Amarasinghe, Ambassador of Sri Lanka in Vietnam.We are thankful to H. E Dr. Ivan Amarasinghe ,Sri Lankan Ambassador in Vietnam who gave excellent corporation from the day the NCCSL initiated to organize the visit,  up to the departure of the delegates from Vietnam. Dr. Amarasinghe extended his fullest support by attending in all the meetings the delegation had with the private sector as well as with the government officials.

 Another important aspect of the visit was the meeting of the Sri Lankan Expatriates living in Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi cities by the delegates where the delegates had an opportunity to obtain first hand experience in doing business with Vietnam.The Sri Lankan delegates included: General Rohan Daluwatte - Chairman/CEO, National Gem & Jewellery Authority; Mr. Shantha Fernando - Deputy Director, Sri Lanka Export Development Board; Mr. H M Nandasena Herath - Chairman, Hadabima Authority Ministry of Agriculture; Mr. Geeth Kumar Dayananda - General Manager, Aitken Spence Plantations; Dr. A.S. Sabaratnam - Managing Director, A.S. Agri Exports (Pvt)Ltd; Dr. A.H Cader - Chairman/Managing Director, Medilab Lanka (Pvt) Ltd; Mr. Thusitha Jayawardene - Chairman/Managing Director, Dip Products Katuwawala (Pvt)Ltd; Mr. Suren Madanayake - Managing Director, ACL Cables PLC; Mr. M Balasubramaniam - Group Executive Chairman, Jay Jay Mills Group; Mr Ranjan Buell - Vice President Operations, Star Garments Ltd; Mr. K F J Macdonald Perera - Managing Director ,Coir de Lanka Exports (Pvt) Ltd/Association of Small & Medium Enterprises; Mr. Jude Xavier - Proprietor, Western Traders; Mr Champika Karunaratne - Director, Karunaratne Sons (Pvt) Ltd; Mr. A Gangatharan - Managing Partner, Kannan & Co; Mr. Asiri Dayan Merenchige - Director Lanka Wasana Motor Co (Pvt.)Ltd; and Mr. Bandula Dissanayake - Deputy Secretary General, NCCSL ( Coordinator  of the Delegation ) representing various sectors such as apparel, gem & jewellery, chemicals/minerals, agriculture, medical equipment, and import/export sector.

Sri Lanka Bangladesh Business Co-operation Council (SLBBCC) Launches Website

Mr S. Wickramarachchi, Deputy President SLBBCC. At a distinguished gathering of Council Members, invitees, guests and the distinguished Guest, the High Commissioner of Bangladesh, His Excellency Mahbub uz Zaman, Patron, of SLBBCC the website of the Sri Lanka Bangladesh Business Co-operation Council ( was launched at a Get together of members at the Golf Club Colombo recently. Patron members the High Commissioner of Bangladesh, Patron member Mr Asoka Hettigoda, and President of Sri Lanka Bangladesh Business Co-operation Council Mr Asela de Livera addressed the gathering. The members interacted with each other and showed their interest to promote trade and strengthen bilateral relations between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. A Trade Delegation to Bangladesh has also been planned towards end December 2011 to coincide with a leading Trade Exhibition scheduled to be held in Dhaka.

In the picture from left to right are:

Mr Asoka Hettigod, President NCCSL & Patron member SLBBCC, H.E. Mahbub Uz Zaman, the High Commissioner Bangladesh, Mr Asela de Livera, President SLBBCC,