Home / Front Page/ Exports must be everyone’s business: Malik

Exports must be everyone’s business: Malik

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Friday, 20 July 2018 00:00



  • Drives home the point that one agency or one ministry cannot be responsible for boosting growth 

For Sri Lanka’s exports to reach ultimate success they have to become the business of all stakeholders, Development Strategies and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama said yesterday, calling on all officials and the private sector to join the National Export Strategy (NES) implementation.  

Samarawickrama insisted on the importance of everyone’s commitment to driving it forward.  “We need to collaborate to ensure things happen on the focused priority sectors on a fast-tracked basis for the next five years. Exports must now be everyone’s business, not just one agency or one ministry. It is the only option Sri Lanka has to create better jobs for our younger generation and to ensure sustainable transition into a higher income economy,” he said. 

The Minister emphasized that Sri Lanka still has time to reverse negative, inward looking, protectionist policies and make up for lost time by making a transition to an export and foreign direct investment (FDI) led growth trajectory.

“What is very clear is that Sri Lanka has a long way to go, and if we concentrate only on our 21 million market, we will never be able to achieve the rapid economic development that Sri Lanka needs. Our only choice is to integrate with the world markets, and exports is a key pathway in that,” he added.

The Minister pointed out that there was overwhelming evidence on the important role that trade, exports and investment play in accelerating economic growth and yet, Sri Lanka still has some people who deny this and want to stile policy push towards this direction.

“Put aside narrow political agendas because really, there is only one agenda that is truly at stake here — the future of our youth, the next generation of workers and entrepreneurs. For them, we need to shape a country that is integrated with world markets, and create high- paying jobs, not a country that is inward looking, isolated and uncompetitive,” he emphasised.

Samarawickrama stressed that anyone who claims that we should be careful before opening up because we might not be able to compete is doing Sri Lanka a huge injustice.

“Why should we be scared of competing with the world? Our medical gloves are used by the world’s best surgeons, our electronic sensors are used in the world’s top car brands, our apparels are worn by the world’s top athletes and our IT software is used by the world’s leading stock exchanges. We can compete and our industries are already showing how it’s done,” he expressed.

The Minister said with the onset of deep and far reaching technological progress, the nature of cross border trade and economic relationships are changing at a dizzying speed. “Physical goods are international products. This new paradigm demands that we adopt new approaches for competitiveness or we risk falling further behind. Hence, I believe NES is timely and ushers in a very important era for all of us,” he added.

Share This Article

Facebook Twitter


1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.


Today's Columnists

17 things ‘Avengers: Endgame’ teaches us about the state of our superheroes

Friday, 24 May 2019

Art imitates life. Even movies do. Maybe especially so. In these lean times, there’s nothing like a little laughter to stop the press, stem the blood pressure, ease that stress in life. So here goes. Trust you’ll take these tongue-in-cheek. Or pe

Sri Lanka needs urgent surgery!

Friday, 24 May 2019

Sri Lanka was on the slippery slope of a serious crisis, heading for a great disaster of the State, even before the outbreak of Easter Sunday attacks. Now, in the aftermath of the ruthless Easter Sunday attacks, the country’s crisis has become exac

Who built the Matara/Beliatta railway line?

Friday, 24 May 2019

In 2019, after 70 long years of independence, Sri Lanka succeeded in adding to the rail network left behind by the British when we extended the southern line from Matara to Beliatta, a distance of less than 20 miles. While the network left in place b

Occupational prestige further propagates a divisive society

Friday, 24 May 2019

Occupational prestige is regarded by society as an individual’s social standing based on the occupational position in the hierarchical social structure of an aggregate of occupations. Accordingly, the general public perceive certain occupations hig

Columnists More