Nawaz Rajabdeen, President, FCCISL (extreme
right) receives a token of goodwill from Cheng Ke, Assistant
Consul Dept. of Commerce of Jillin Province of China.
Please set up an industrial zone in Sri Lanka to
cater to Indian and Pakistan Markets was the earnest plea made
by Nawaz Rajabdeen, President, Federation of Chambers of
Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) when a high powered
trade delegation from Julin Province, China visited the FCCISL.
Rajabdeen said that as Sri Lanka has signed Free
Trade Agreements with India and Pakistan and as such all what is
manufactured in Sri Lanka with 35 percent value addition could
be exported to these two countries with zero tariff charges.
He said that, but if those products are exported to those
countries direct from China a heavy export duty will have to be
paid when crossing the products to India or Pakistan.
He said that if the Jilin Province decides to
set up an industrial zone in Sri Lanka, they could select an
ideal location with all the amenities in place and the Sri
Lankan Government would extend many attractive concessions on
direct foreign investment in Sri Lanka.
The Chinese Trade delegation was led by Xu
Dechen, Vice Division Director, Department of Commerce, Jilin
Province. The main purpose of the visit of the Chinese
delegation has been to promote the 4th China Julin Northeast
Asia Investment and Trade Expo which is scheduled to be held
from 2 to 6 September 2008 in China Jilin Changchun
International Conference and Exhibition Centre.
FCCISL hopes to take a delegation from Sri Lanka
so that those trade delegates could procure joint ventures,
bilateral trade and other export and import matters that would
mutually benefit Sri Lanka and China.
Rajabdeen further said that FCCISL is closely
connected with the Chinese Business Community. He said that the
Federation of Chambers has been in the practice of sending Sri
Lankan Trade Delegations to China and they have mutually
He said that there would be a lot of development
activities in Sri Lanka and on account of these development and
construction activities there would arise opportunities to have
Sri Lankan and Chinese collaboration programmes.
Xu Dechen said that with a population of 680
million China takes up one fifth of the economic power of the
world and the volume of exports and imports between China and
the other five countries in Northeast Asia by 2006 accounted for
21.5 percent of Chinatotal foreign trade.
He said that Jilin Province has become one of
the most dynamic provinces in China. In 2006 the gross
regional product increased by 15 percent ranking the second in
the country. Increasing rate of fixed assets investment
has topped the country for two consecutive years.
The Jilin NE Asia Trade Expo is an initiative
taken by the Chinese Government to promote economic and trade
communication between China and other Northeastern Asian
countries aiming for a platform to enjoy mutual benefits,
exchange and cooperation, opening competition between these
countries and China.
Samantha Abeywickrama, Secretary General/CEO,
FCCISL said that FCCISL has been in the practice of organizing
trade delegations to China and to various trade fairs held in
different parts of China. He said that authorities
organizing those trade exhibitions in China have been granting
concessions and made a request from these officials from the
Jilin Province, Department of Commerce to make the same type of
concession for the delegation who would visit Jilin Expo from
Cheng Ke, Vice Director General, Dept of
Commerce, Jilin Province who looked after such arrangements said
that they would certainly extend all such possible concessions.
Hildon Hamangoda, Director, SAARC and
International Affairs, FCCISL said that he has been organizing
trade delegations to China for the last 12 years and last
December they have led a trade delegation to the Kunming Trade
Fair where the Sri Lankan Pavilion was adjudged best among the
pavilions of other countries.