Government expects GSP soon following final talks in Brussels

HarshaThe Government expects Sri Lanka to receive the GSP plus trade concession from the European Union (EU) soon following talks held in Brussels yesterday.

Deputy Foreign Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva said that Sri Lanka is now on the final leg of the GSP+ application process.

“It will be made in a matter of weeks as EU and Sri Lanka are now just about ready except for a few loose ends to be tied up,” he said.

The EU-Sri Lanka Working Group on Trade and Economic Cooperation met yesterday (May 11) in Brussels for the final round of talks before Sri Lanka submits its application for the GSP plus from the EU.

The meeting was co-chaired by Mrs. Sonali Wijeratne, Director General of Commerce, for Sri Lanka and Peter Berz, Head of Unit, European Commission Directorate General for Trade, for the EU.

The Working Group discussed issues related to bilateral trade and investment and possible means for their promotion in a mutual beneficial manner. In particular it discussed Sri Lanka’s intention in applying for GSP+ status under the European Union’s GSP Regulation.

It took positive note of the fact that Sri Lanka had made significant progress in addressing outstanding issues towards launching an application, especially relating to the rule of law, democracy, governance and the overall situation pertaining to human and labour rights and environmental protection.

They welcomed that as a result of Sri Lanka’s successful reform of its fisheries governance system, the Commission has proposed to Council on 21 April 2016 the lifting of the import ban related to illegal unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.

They also discussed bilateral matters and noted progress related to investment dialogue, customs valuation and exports of fruits and vegetables from Sri Lanka to the EU.

The EU and Sri Lanka also reviewed the results and work ahead after the 10th WTO Ministerial Conference in Nairobi and expressed their hope that the Trade Facilitation Agreement would enter into force as soon as possible, while noting action already taken by Sri Lanka to ratify the agreement.

Sri Lanka and EU noted the imminent launch of the trade related technical assistance projects to assist SMEs’ trade competitiveness in regional and EU markets under EU’s Regional Programming for Asia (Multiannual Indicative Programme 2014-2020). (Colombo Gazette)


  1. More political accused for human rights GSP+ A $300k rebate per year.

    Is europe’s gravy train an anchor of human rights?



  2. Is it getting GSP+ do you think Sri lanka getting an advantage.According to the present salaries investors cannot afford to pay salaries and get a profit from this industry.So that they have bring cheap labour from other countries. Otherwise investors try to supply the orders trough countries like India,Bangalidesh,Pakistan.

  3. The bankrupt Sri Lankan Leaders are going behind the already bankrupt European Union at the expense of the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka, to get trade concessions such as GSP Plus etc. ignoring more effluent Asian countries.

    • I agree 100%, ask Harsha de Silva how many positions he has within the government, and what he has accomplished to improve the economy. He pretends well as a guru in Economics, but has done nothing to the country.


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