US mission holds first forum in Colombo
The US Multi-Sector trade mission to Colombo held its first forum
last week in Colombo. The U.S. Embassy, in partnership with the US
Commercial Service, hosted this event with the prime focus of promoting
potential business and investment opportunities and foster trade between
the two countries, through the American Chamber of Commerce in Sri
This was an important and exclusive event that consolidated the main
objective of putting forth business entities and ideals to promote
bilateral trade between the US and Sri Lanka. USA considers Asia as its
most important trading partner and emphasis on trade and investment
being vested into Asia.
The United States is Sri Lanka’s largest trading partner, with over $
two billion in annual exports from Sri Lanka and $ 200 million in
imports of US goods and services. The trade mission included
participating delegates from a group of US companies that represented
the education sector, IT, architecture and engineering, food industries,
medicine, airline services and infrastructure development. These sectors
would help provide a considerable growth prospect to Sri Lanka.
The forum’s discussion was highlighted on Sri Lanka’s position in the
Whilst emerging markets like Burma and Vietnam were a major
attraction for US investors, Sri Lanka should try to create the accurate
environment for investors and therefore, utilize this opportunity. The
American Chamber of Commerce in Sri Lanka is committed to support any
further action with regard to this.
A presentation was conducted by Prasath Nanayakkara, Vice President
of American Chamber of Commerce in Sri Lanka, in which AMCHAM’s role in
the partnership was emphasized. “The chamber has an annual growth rate
of 12 percent. The American Chamber of Commerce’s objective is to
stimulate, develop, promote, foster and facilitate commercial,
industrial and economical entities within the two countries,”
Nanayakkara said during the presentation.
Special focus for 2013 was intended towards Small and Medium Sized
Enterprises (SMEs) where we could bring together multiple units to be
promoted and assist them in their future ventures.
“There is a demand in the fields of education and health. Sri Lanka
volume in terms of market space is small and we need to raise awareness
that for an investor to come into Sri Lanka for a potential venture, the
volume needs to be considered considerably,” Ravin Basnayake, Country
Head and CEO, Citibank said.