Lankan SMEs call to India for JVs | Daily News

Lankan SMEs call to India for JVs

Sri Lankan SMEs have issued a siren call to their Indian counterparts for sustainable cross-border Joint Ventures at the “Indo Sri Lanka International Trade, Investment, and Technology Transfer Cooperation” online global leadership platform event.

The invitation called Indian SME investors to partner in six frontline segments in Sri Lankan on Joint Venture- metal, food processing, coconuts, tea and rubber and plastic.

“We are thinking of bringing in new technology and machinery from India to revive Sri Lanka’s sick industries. Members of Confederation of Indian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (CIMSME) can join us in this,” said COSMI Founder President Nawaz Rajabdeen on July 9. “Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse has endorsed Public Private Partnerships to advance our SMEs” said COSMI founder President Nawaz Rajabdeen.

Representing Lankan SMEs at this pioneering global leadership session by India’s CIMSME titled “Indo Sri Lanka International Trade, Investment, Technology Transfer Cooperation” Rajabdeen also voiced that many women entrepreneurs are not coming forward to register their SMEs. Joining the Forum along with COSMI’s Rajabdeen, were Chairperson, GCPIT Ayanthi Gurusinghe, Secretary General /CEO of Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) Ajith D Perera and Thisath Wijayagunawardane, President’s Counsel and Lawyer.

Speaking on his theme titled Cluster Development and its Challenges, Rajabdeen said that Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) have hindered Sri Lankan exports to India –some coming from local SMEs. “Bilateral Free Trade Agreements are seen as one way to overcome NTBs between trade partners. However, that too is not always fruitful. For example the utilization of India Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement (ISFTA). The use of ISFTA by Sri Lankan exporters is only 65%. The reason is that even trade under the free trade agreement is locked with barriers,” Rajabdeen said.

India is Sri Lanka’s fourth largest export destination. 4,400 product lines have been given to Sri Lanka tariff free by India under Free Trade Agreement. 65% of products exported from India to Sri Lanka comes out of ISFTA.

Sri Lankan exports to India have increased substantially in the past 18 years since 2000 –the year Indo-Sri Lanka FTA came into force. In 2019, bilateral trade between India and Sri Lanka totaled to US $ 4.59 billion. Exports from India to Sri Lanka surged from US $600 million in 2001 to $4,495 million in 2018.

The Confederation of Micro, Small and Medium Industries (COSMI) was formed in 2019, and aims to revive and foster the MSME and industry sectors of Sri Lanka.

 


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