An investment promotion delegation led by Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Minister of Enterprise De-velopment, Investment Promotion, Mass Media and Information has concluded a highly successful programme in Thailand and Singapore. The visit was organised by the Board of Investment (BOI) in co-ordination with the Sri Lankan Embassies in Thailand and Singapore and received tremendous interest from potential investors. The highlight of the programme in Thailand was an Investment Forum, Emerging Peace and Business Opportunities in Sri Lanka, organised by the Thai-Sri Lanka Chamber of Commerce. More than 125 companies attended the seminar. Delivering the keynote address, Minister Yapa said Sri Lanka was today one of the safest countries in the world for investment. “We are one of the few countries in the world to have eliminated terrorism and now the Government is focused on rapid economic development of the whole country,” Minister Yapa said, adding that the Government was keen to attract investments to the newly liberated North and East of the country with tax-free incentives being offered up to 15 years. The Minister also met with Thai companies interested in investing in Sri Lanka, including one of the largest construction companies that played a central role in the construction of the new Suvarnabhumi airport and the allied highways. Two investment delegations from Thailand are expected in Colombo in the coming months, as a follow-up to the Minister’s visit. Minister Yapa also delivered the keynote addresses at two investment forums in Singapore organised by the BOI and the High Commission in Singapore in co-ordination with International Enterprise and the Singapore Business Federation (SBF). Among the CEOs who met with the Minister were a large conglomerate with interest in hospitality, mining and real estate and the Asian head of a large US-based consumer products company that is finalising its investment plans in Sri Lanka to target the South Asian market. Minister Yapa held a meeting with Singapore’s Minister for Trade and Investment Lim Hng Kiang to discuss the expansion of investments from Singapore to Sri Lanka. The Singapore Minister expressed his government’s willingness to fast track negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement between Sri Lanka and Singapore.
Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Minister of Enterprise Development, Investment Promotion, Mass Media and Information with Prof J B. Disanayaka, Sri Lankan Ambassador in Thailand, Thinakorn Kanasuta, Thai Ambassador in Sri Lanka, and officials from the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka and the Thai-Sri Lanka Chambers of Commerce.