Investment and export mission to Germany yields new partnership opportunities for Sri Lanka


Minister Malik Samarawickrema (2nd from left) with dignitaries

The Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade, together with the Board of Investment, Export Development Board, and the AHK Germany, led a successful investment and export promotion visit to Germany last week. During the 3-day 3-city promotion mission led by Malik Samarawickrama, Sri Lanka’s interests and capabilities in the trade and investment arena were showcased to a range of German and European investors ranging from international logistics players, high-end equipment manufacturers, to importers of processed products.

The delegation also comprised a private sector team drawn from apparels, logistics, real estate, and automotives. For the first time in history in the country, a Sri Lankan tech startup was also part of the official delegation. Sri Lanka’s ambassador to Germany Karunasena Hettiarachchi also participated in the meetings.

A business forum was conducted in each of the three cities of Frankfurt, Hamburg and Berlin, during which Minister Samarawickrama as well as BOI Director General Duminda Ariyasinghe and EDB chairperson Indira Malwatte addressed the audiences of German investors on the investment opportunities in Sri Lanka and proactive facilitation by the government. In his address to the participants, the Minister stated, "German companies can enjoy the benefit of being located in a strategic geographic location, from which you can reach out to India, South Asia, East Asia, as well as Africa and the Middle East. With our continuing focussing on business-friendly reforms, we will always be there to help you to set up and operate smoothly". He emphasized that German companies investing in Sri Lanka can take advantage of the country’s free trade agreements giving preferential access to India, Pakistan, European Union and soon to Thailand and China.

In addition to the forums, the delegation held a series of targeted one-to-one meetings with interested German investors in order to provide them with a deeper understanding of the opportunities and the business climate. Meetings were held with top German and European brands like BBraun, Hellmann Logistics, TÜV Rheinland, Siemens, Fresenius, TUI Group, SAP, Heidelberg Cement, Melchers Group, Linde Group, DER Touristik, Allianz and the German Tea Council. During the one-to-one meetings the Minister remarked that, "The world has accepted that German companies are trend setters – whether it is in quality, safety, or technology."

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