Written by Bella Dalima
15 Oct, 2014 | 10:15 pm
The eleventh Joint Council Meeting under the USA – Sri Lanka Trade and Investment Framework Agreement or TIFA was held in Colombo on Wednesday.
The meeting was attended by delegations both Sri Lanka and the United States of America, including Minister of Industry and Commerce of Sri Lanka Rishad Bathiyutheen and Sri Lankan Ambassador to the U.S. Prasad Kariyawasam.
The TIFA Joint Council Meeting provides a platform to hold trade policy dialogues spanning across a wide range of areas of mutual interest between the two countries.
Sri Lankan Ambassador to USA, Prasad Kariywasam expressed these views:
[quote]There are many areas where opportunities are still abound for our two countries to exploit the emerging development paradigm in our region where Sri Lanka can be a major hub for the US business and US investors to reach out not only for Sri Lankan markets but the markets in the region. Sri Lanka today, by the World Bank Indexes, we are the best for the business in South Asia, we are the most liberalised nation in South Asia but still there are challenges for us to get to the next level. And this is a good platform for us to discuss our issues.[/quote]
Minister of Industry and Commerce of Sri Lanka, Rishad Bathiyutheen shared these views;
[quote]Seen from our side, bi-lateral trade between both the countries increased by a stronger 21% to 2.8bn dollars in 2013 compared to 2012. US absorbs 23% of Sri Lanka’s annual total exports of which 73% comes from high end apparels. According to the Washington-based Heritage Foundation’s Index of Economic Freedom of this year also, Sri Lanka has maintained its commanding position as the most economically free nation in South Asia.[/quote]
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