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Business Opportunities


2004 Business Opportunities In Sri Lanka Presentation by Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe Sri Lanka s Ambassador to the US Sri Lanka: Overview Sri Lanka is an ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Business Opportunities

Business Opportunities In Sri Lanka
Presentation by Ambassador Devinda R.
Subasinghe Sri Lankas Ambassador to the US
Basic Facts
  • Area 65,606 sq km
  • Population 19.04 million
  • Labor Force 6.7 million
  • Literacy Rate 92
  • Languages Sinhala, Tamil,
  • Religions Buddhism -70
    Hinduism 15
  • Christianity
  • Islam 7
  • Government type - Republic
  • Capital - Colombo
  • Independence - 4 February 1948
    (from U.K.)

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Sri Lanka Overview
  • Sri Lanka is an island located in the Indian
    Ocean, at the base of the Indian Sub-Continent,
    880 km north of the Equator.
  • Sri Lanka is a multi-ethnic, multi-religious
    country with a diverse and rich culture dating
    back to 2,500 years.
  • A land of endless enchantment for visitors from
    all over the world.
  • Its fragrant spices, precious gems, legendary
    natural beauty, sublime culture and hospitable
    people made it South Asias paradise island.

Sri Lanka Overview
  • Sri Lankas strategic location on the sea lanes
    between the East and the West is an advantage to
    the islands positioning as the hub of South
  • Sri Lankas most dynamic sectors in the economy
    are textiles and apparel, food processing,
    tourism, food and beverages, telecommunications
    and, insurance and banking.

US-Sri Lanka RelationsA Historical Glimpse
  • A history of 200 years of people-people contacts.
  • 19th century trade involved the import of New
    England ice to Sri Lanka and the export of Sri
    Lankan graphite to America.
  • Joseph Dixon, popularizer of the modern lead
    pencil visited Sri Lanka in 1838 to arrange for
    export of graphite.
  • As early as 1813, Rev. Samuel Newell, a New
    England clergyman, engaged in Missionary activity
    in Ceylon (Sri Lanka.
  • Mrs. Harriet Winslow (great-great grandmother of
    the late John Foster Dulles) founded a girls
    boarding school in 1824, considered the first in
  • In 1917, Dr. Ananda Coomaraswamy, one of worlds
    leading Oriental scholars, was named the Curator
    of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.
  • Formal diplomatic relations were established in

Sri Lanka-US Business Relations
  • Government of Sri Lanka currently pursuing a Free
    Trade Agreement with the US Government to open
    markets bilaterally.
  • Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA)
    signed with the US in July 2002 and establishment
    of Trade and Investment Joint Council to promote
    trade and investment.
  • Sri Lanka has signed an Investment
  • Agreement, an Avoidance of Double Taxation
    Agreement, an Open Skies Agreement and a
    Protection of Intellectual Property Rights
    Agreement with the US to promote and guarantee
    protection of US FDI in Sri Lanka.
  • The Sri Lanka Congressional Caucus of the 108th
    Congress has been reactivated to enhance US- Sri
    Lanka bilateral relations.
  • A Sri Lanka Working Group at the United States
    Chamber of Commerce was established in September
    2003 to foster increased business relationships
    with Sri Lanka and to create a greater awareness
    of the business opportunities that exist for US

Sri Lankas Trade with the US
  • Total trade between Sri Lanka and the US was
    US 2 billion in 2002.
  • Total trade between Sri Lanka and the US
  • - US1.80 billion in the first 11 months of
  • Sri Lanka exports to the US was US1.7 billion
    (first 11 months of 2003).
  • US exports to Sri Lanka was US1.4 million (first
    11 months of 2003).

Sri Lankas Exports to the US
  • Ceylon tea, considered the best in the world,
    caters to speciality tea segment of the US
    market. Sri Lanka is the second largest supplier
    of packeted tea and the third largest supplier of
    tea bags to the US. Sri Lanka also exports green

Sri Lankas Imports from the US
  • Cereals (wheat)
  • Electrical machinery
  • Fabrics and yarns
  • Tobacco
  • Paper and paper board
  • Rubber products
  • Chemicals
  • Automobiles
  • Plastics

Major US Companies Operating in Sri Lanka
  • AES Corporation
  • Computer Associates International Inc.
  • Gloria Vanderbilt
  • The Coca Cola Company
  • Liz Claiborne Inc.
  • Nathan Associates
  • May Department Stores International
  • JP Morgan Chase
  • Singer Corporation
  • Mast Industries Inc.
  • Lanka Bell (Pvt.) Ltd.
  • Celetron
  • Playknits Group
  • J. Walter Thompson
  • Union Carbide
  • Warner Lambert
  • The Limited Inc.
  • Caterpillar Power
  • Ventures Corporation
  • Sara Lee branded Apparel
  • Kellwood
  • Wal-mart Stores Inc.
  • Bell Helicopter
  • Ansell
  • American International Group Inc.
  • Citi Group inc.

Leading Brand Names Manufactured in Sri Lanka
The Limited Inc. and Sri Lanka
  • The Limited, the Columbus, Ohio based company has
    been purchasing intimate apparel (Victorias
    Secret) from Sri Lanka for the last 15 years.
  • Sri Lanka manufactured lingerie, from the
    state-of the-art factories employing highly
    skilled and literate workers, considered the
    best product on the shelves at Victorias Secret
  • Victorias Secret sources over US350 million
    worth of merchandise from Sri Lanka.
  • Sri Lanka recognized as one of Victorias
    Secrets leading manufacturing bases in the

Trade Opportunities for Companies in Ohio
  • Potential Ohio Exports
  • Agricultural Products Soybeans, corn, Wheat,
    feed grains
  • Medical Rubber Products
  • Industrial Machinery Computers
  • Paper and Paper Board
  • Potential Imports from Sri Lanka
  • Apparel
  • Tea
  • Gems and Jewelry
  • Rubber and Rubber Goods
  • Information Communication Technology (ICT)
  • Plastics

Opportunities under India-Sri Lanka Free Trade
  • Sri Lanka as a value addition platform to the
    Indian sub-continent.
  • A market of over 1.0 billion people.
  • Market Access Over 80of goods can enter on
    duty free basis
  • Sri Lanka-India land bridge project proposed.
    Pre-feasibility study is to be undertaken to
    determine viability.
  • Potential sectors for US investment
  • Rubber, Paper Paper board, garments
    textiles, iron steel, Machinery mechanical
    appliances, electronics/electrical and
    automobiles spare parts.

Indo-Lanka Land Bridge Location
The Land Bridge to India
Sri Lanka in US Study Abroad Programs
  • DRAFT SLIDE for comments please.
  • The ISLE (Intercollegiate Sri Lanka Education)
    Program initiated in 1982, is based in Kandy, Sri
  • Participating colleges include, Bates, Bowdoin,
    Carleton, Colby, Grinnell, Holy Cross, Swarthmore
    and Whitman.
  • Majors include, Religion, Political Science,
    Development Studies, Sociology and Anthropology,
    Womens Studies, Psychology and Linguistics.
  • Internships available with Government and Private
    Institutions and, NGOs.
  • The American Institute for Sri Lankan Studies
    (AISLS), established in 1995 - fosters excellence
    in American research and teaching on Sri Lanka
  • - Promotes exchange of scholars and scholarly
    information between the US and Sri Lanka
  • AISLS Fellowships support 2-4 months research in
    Sri Lanka by US citizens holding PhDs or

Investment Opportunities for Ohio Companies
in Sri Lanka
  • Infrastructure Development- Power Energy Ports
    Airports Water Supply Sanitation Highways
  • Biosciences
  • Information Communication Technology
  • Rubber products
  • Automobile parts
  • Vertical integration of textiles/accessories
  • Food processing industries

Business Climate
The Sri Lankan economy is one of the most
business friendly and liberalised in South Asia.
  • Total Foreign Ownership
  • No restriction on Foreign Exchange
    Transactions(related to current account
  • Safety of Foreign Investments Guaranteed by the
  • Agreements signed with many countries
  • Bilateral Investment Protection
  • Double Tax Relief
  • Equal Treatment Foreign Local Investors
  • Legal Regulatory framework
  • Sophisticated
  • Transparent

Investment Incentives in Sri Lanka
  • Tax holidays from 5 to 20 years.
  • Concessionary tax at 15 after expiry of tax
  • Import Duty Exemption for Capital Goods.
  • Import Duty Exemption on Raw Materials if
    utilized for export
  • Exemption from Exchange Controls.
  • No restriction on repatriation of dividends,
    profits etc.
  • Free transferability of shares
  • The right to 100 foreign ownership in almost all
    sectors of the economy
  • Concessionary Taxation on expatriates income

Thank You!
Embassy of Sri Lanka 2148, Wyoming Avenue
NW Washington DC 20008 Telephone 202-483-4026
Fax 202-232-7181 E mail Website
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