The government is implementing a trade adjustment policy for the first time in Sri Lanka with the launch of the National Export Strategy (NES).
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe made this comment at the launch of the NES at Temple Trees in Colombo on Thursday.
He said the government is looking at legislation which will cover a single window for investors and ease of doing business. This legislation is seen in Bangladesh, Kenya, South Africa and it’s time that Sri Lanka bring it in. “We don’t want any domestic enterprise to be adversely affected. Our domestic enterprises have grown and we are now bringing for the first time a trade adjustment policy,” he added.
He also stated that the tax incentive is applicable even for domestic industries to become more competitive. The trade adjustment policy is for the government to help industries to become competitive. This will create many jobs in the export industry which is an essential part of the economy and should be assisted to adjust to the new trading environment.
The NES focusses on the development of the export sector of Sri Lanka until 2022. The key objective of the strategy is to increase the capacity of Sri Lanka’s export sector and to improve trade performances. “This competiveness ensures that our different sectors of the economy become more competitive to get the share of the global market. This is not only a national strategy, but a job and income strategy,” reiterated Mr. Wickremesinghe.
Global trade today is conducted in the most intensely competitive environment driven by the rapid advancement in science and technology that now underpin industry and commerce. “We have to go up the value chain and exploit the global market,” he noted.
Deputy Head of Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Sri Lanka and Maldives, Paul Godfrey at the launch, said that the government of Sri Lanka is confident to move to a liberal economic model that has export growth. The EU accounts for 27 per cent of Sri Lanka’s global exports making it the largest market. This strategy can be the platform for increasing that figure, he added.
He said there is real potential for increasing export growth in food and spices. Reducing the cost for exporters in compliance with international standards is an important contribution that this strategy can drive. Information Technology is also an area with great potential for further development. (RM)
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