|Wednesday, 28 May 2003|
Admiring the promptness with which the Indian government responded to the Sri Lankan request for aid in the aftermath of one of the worst floods in the history of Sri Lanka, Minister of Enterprise Development, Industrial Policy and Investment Promotion and Constitutional Affairs, Prof. G. L. Peiris appreciated "the spirit of the India-Sri Lankan Accord".
Prof. Peiris said that under the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) many Sri Lankan companies have emerged as national players in their respective fields. Quoting Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru "opportunity beckons and the door is ajar" India and Sri Lanka relations has much to be achieved. He ended his address by stating that the event was "another significant milestone in the development of our relationships".
Minister Rohita Bogollagama said that India and Sri Lanka have to ensure that the Indo-Sri Lanka relations which had been initiated more than a decade ago, are nurtured and allow to grow further. He mentioned that this event would be marked as an historic moment in the bilateral relations of the two countries. While mentioned "Indian industrialists are treated as our own", Mr. Bogollagama requested business houses in both the countries to fully utilise the US $ 100 line of credit extended by the Government of India.
Prof. G. L. Peiris, Minister of Enterprise Development, Industrial Policy and Investment Promotion and Constitutional Affairs, Rohita Bogollagama, Minister of Industries, Jayalath Jayawardhana, Minister for Rehabilitation, Arumugan Thondaman, Minister for Housing and Plantation Infrastructure, Muthu Sivalingam, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, Government of Sri Lanka.
The High Commissioner of India, Nirupam Sen suggested that there was always a need for a proper environment and would catalyse optimal growth of industrial relations between both the countries. He urged for more legislative and economic cooperation between both the countries. Sen further said that Phase II of the FTA would be to bring about entry of the services sector, education, railways, transportation etc.
Tilak de Zoysa, Chairman, Ceylon Chamber of Commerce said that Sri Lanka has always been a preferred destination for direct investment by Indian business within the SAARC region. As a symbol of extended cooperation between the two industry bodies.
More than 130 Indian companies are participating in the 5 day event.
Produced by Lake House