Government confident of obtaining GSP plus from EU

The Government says it is confident of obtaining the GSP plus trade concession from the European Union (EU).

Minister of Public Enterprises Development Kabir Hashim said that GSP plus is a big victory for the country.

A motion to deny Sri Lanka the GSP plus trade concession was defeated by the EU Parliament last week.

Sri Lanka won the vote in Brussels with 436 members voting against the motion, 119 in favor and 22 abstentions.

Hashim says the Government is now confident Sri Lanka will be able to receive GSP plus from the EU soon.

An EU fact finding delegation had recently raised concerns over labour rights in Sri Lanka ahead of a decision being taken on Sri Lanka’s application for GSP plus.

The Fact Finding Mission, which included Members of the European Parliament Anne-Marie Mineur and Lola Sánchez Caldentey, visited Sri Lanka to assess the country’s progress on human and labour rights.

The European Union will decide in May if Sri Lanka is duly entitled, or not, to be granted GSP plus. This status is a component of the EU policy for developing countries which offers trade incentives to those which implement core international conventions on human and labour rights, sustainable development and good governance. (Colombo Gazette)