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Government Gazette

Agro based export processing zones through Budget 2009 - Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris

The Budget has allocated sufficient funding to increase the Export revenue which is the live-wire of our economy and to see that its benefits percolate to the masses in the provinces, said Export Development and International Trade Minister G.L. Peiris.

The Minister made these comments on Tuesday at a media conference at the Export Development Board to brief the media on special concessions and funding provided by the Budget 2009 for development of Exports.

He said Rs. 500 million has been allocated to set up Agro based export processing zones and to provide concessions to exporters to be competitive in the volatile International Market which is facing the effects of the world economic crisis.

Rs. 1,000 million is allocated to find new markets for our products and to develop existing markets. It is also proposed to bring down the fuel surcharge levied by the Ceylon Electricity Board to 15 per cent litre he said.

Among other concessions are the reduction of the price of Furnace oil to Rs. 55 per litter and to suspend the repayment of loan instalments obtained for Industrial purposes by six months.

The Minister said support for the production of Tea for export, a preparation of national Tax policy and setting up of a powerful structure for industrial development are also included in the proposals.

He said the Sri Lanka Export Development Board is making arrangements to set up three new branch offices in Hambanthota, Ampara and Kaluthara, apart from the branches already operating in Kandy, Hambanthota and Galle.

Secretary to the Ministry of Export Development and International Trade S. Ranugge, Chairman EDB Anil Koswatte, DG Sujatha Weerakoon were also present at the meeting.

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