The Government hopes to introduce new bills in parliament by June in order to create an even more efficient, dynamic and secure business environment conducive for investment, Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said today.
Speaking at a media briefing after holding discussions with his Swedish counterpart, Margot Wallström, who is in Sri Lanka on an official visit, Samaraweera said that as Sri Lanka improves market access to the Sub-continent by deepening existing free trade agreements with India and Pakistan, it is also negotiating to sign a Free Trade Agreement with emerging markets like China.
Therefore, he said, the Government was confident that the Swedish trade delegation led by Wallstrom would find Sri Lanka an attractive gateway to the Sub-continent and the Indian Ocean rim.
In addition to emerging market access, Samaraweera said that Sri Lanka was consolidating its position in developed markets such as the US.
“We are also buoyed by the EU Commission lifting the red card on Sri Lanka’s fish exports, and we will soon be in a position to regain GSP plus concessionary access to the EU market,” Samaraweera said.
“By June a number of important bills will be introduced in Parliament to create an even more efficient, dynamic and secure business environment conducive for investment. Sri Lanka then will be truly open for business.”
Wallstrom is accompanied by a seven member trade delegation comprising of leading Swedish companies and both Sweden and Sri Lanka, today discussed ways of strengthening their partnership, including enhancing development assistance, bilateral trade, tourism and investment.
During her visit, Wallstrom is expected call on President Maithripala Sirisena, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and meet the Speaker of Parliament, Karu Jayasuriya.
She will also visit the former war torn northern city of Jaffna where she will meet with government officials and civil society and visit an IDP Welfare Camp and a Housing Project. (Colombo Gazette)