More should be done to win confidence of exporters - Ramal J. | Daily News


More should be done to win confidence of exporters - Ramal J.

Ramal Jasinghe at the event. Picture by Saliya Rupasinghe
Ramal Jasinghe at the event. Picture by Saliya Rupasinghe

With the implementation of the National Export Strategy (NES), much work is left to be done in terms of winning confidence of the export community said Ramal Jasinghe, immediate Past President of National Chamber of Exporters (NCE) of Sri Lanka.

“NCE is now engaged as a participant to the implementation process of the NES, with seats on the Advisory and Working Committees.” Jasinghe told at the 17th Annual General Meeting of NCE, held at Galadari Hotel, Colombo.

He said that Chamber was continually in the forefront raising concerns of exporters related to the negotiations of the proposed Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with larger countries who enjoy greater economies of scale, to mitigate difficulties to enter their territories due to non-tariff barriers, non-recognition of quarantine and laboratory test reports of Sri Lankan institutions, country of origin requirements, and items included in the negative lists which impact Sri Lankan manufacturers.

“However the Chamber recognizes the need to reach a wider global customer base through FTAs or a similar mechanism, to achieve inclusion to the global market place, on fair trading terms. “he said.

He also noted that the Chamber has presented to the Ministry of Finance a comprehensive set of budget of proposals following consultations with member exporters, and the conduct of a pre-budget workshop to identify issues. We trust that these proposals will be taken in to consideration following the resolution of the prevalent political issues, which the Chamber will follow up on behalf of our members”

With the real possibility of the GSP concession eventually being withdrawn to the growing Middle Income Status of the Country, emphasis on the export of Services would attract more focus of the Chamber.

“Having made positive through the initiatives of our ICT cluster, we recognize as a sustainable way forward the need to add on more service providers earning foreign exchange to augment the service sector portfolio of the Chamber, such as education , Tourism and Professional services, to develop a robust export economy.” he said.

He also stressed Sri Lanka’s competitor countries in the region such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Cambodia, have overtaken Sri Lanka in apparel exports sector this year by a wide margin due to their gains during the period where Sri Lanka lost GSP+ benefits, with total exports from Bangladesh which is categorized as a least developed country reaching US$ 40 billion.

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