Business Times

Sri Lanka is next Asian economic miracle :ex-Pakistan bureaucrat

Sri Lanka is the next economic miracle success story emerging in Asia and several Pakistani businessmen and investors have already expressed their willingness to invest in the Colombo stock market. Speaking to the Business Times, Khalil Masood, Executive Chairman of SKM Lanka Holdings (Pvt) Ltd said a branch of the National Bank of Pakistan in Colombo will start functioning soon and it will facilitate Pakistan investments in Sri Lanka. He noted that there are immense potential opportunities in tourism, textile, IT, agriculture, fisheries, telecommunication, leather products, infrastructure, and sports products for the Pakistan investors to venture into.

Sri Lanka is one of the most preferred countries for investments especially in the areas of garments, packaging, IT, telecommunication and rubber, he added. Investors from all over the world were keenly following developments in the island nation, he said adding that tourism is likely to grow at a remarkable level because tourism had seen a 50 % growth in the last few months.

Mr. Masood is a former Chairman of Pakistani Stock Exchange and Chairman of Arif Habib Securities, a unit of the Arif Habib Group, which is listed on the Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad Stock Exchanges. He served in Pakistani Customs and Stock Exchange for around 40 years.

He was in Sri Lanka recently on a 2-day visit, to evaluate the progress of SKM Lanka Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, a unit of Pakistan’s Arif Habib Securities. SKM Lanka Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, has invested over Rs.150 million in the capital market of Sri Lanka from the inception. The Pakistani broker has entered Sri Lanka as part of a regional expansion plan, Mr. Masood said.

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