The Export Development Board (EDB) signed a memorandum of understanding with the Sri Lanka Institute of Nanotechnology (SLINTEC) 12 January, with the view to enhance research and development access to Sri Lanka’s exporters.
As part of that endeavour EDB has provided space to SLINTEC to open a satellite office at their headquarters in Nawam Mawatha.
In addition to the strategic and business development staff of SLINTEC being present on a regular basis at the EDB premises, SLINTEC will also conduct a weekly ‘Science Clinic’ to enable exporters to discuss their main concerns and drive new innovation to their current product range. The EDB encourages the exporters to utilise facilities being offered and to seek assistance from SLINTEC where necessary. The EDB will also consider providing financial assistance to exporters to carry out research and development to address high impact projects.
State Minister of International Trade Sujeewa Senasinghe who witnessed the event said: “Within the last three months the EDB has started many new initiatives including the one-stop-shop and Exporters Forum. These initiatives have resulted in a new focus and today’s MoU extends this new outlook even further. We need to realise that in addition to FDI and policies, new technology is crucial for us to develop and even enhance our exports effort. Countries above Sri Lanka such as Korea, Singapore etc kept pace and won and this a lesson for us. Today’s MoU enables to share SLINTEC’s great scientific knowledge and expertise with our keen exporters who will help us to take us towards our exports goal.”
Chairperson and CEO of EDB Ms Indira Malwatte addressing the event said that this is a historic day not only for EDB and SLINTEC but even for Sri Lanka. “Our way forward in exports is to go beyond the primary and traditional exports basket to innovative new products exported from Sri Lanka. Even the famous Economist Ricardo Hausmann who played a role in the successful Vietnam export strategy and who addressed the recently concluded Sri Lanka Economic Forum 2016, is of the view that the only way forward in exports for countries like Sri Lanka is to change our exports basket to higher value, innovative and original products and service. We are glad that SLINTEC now has a satellite office within EDB and are excited about the possibilities for exporters” Malwatte added.
Chairman of SLINTEC Dr Mahesh Amalean quoted that technology will play a key role in facilitating the creation of new value to Sri Lankan exports thus providing an opportunity to meet the challenges of a highly competitive global environment.
SLINTEC CEO Harin de Silva Wijeyeratne stated that SLINTEC’s presence at the EDB will provide access to key science and engineering resources in a timely manner to support the EDB’s initiative to grow their exports to $ 20 billion plus by 2020.
The EDB, established in 1979 is the key driver in the promotion and development of Sri Lankan exports. Functioning as the executive arm of the Export Development Council of Ministers, it is headed by the President of Sri Lanka.
SLINTEC is a public-private partnership between the Government of Sri Lanka and the major players in the private sector-namely MAS Holdings, Brandix, Dialog, Hayleys, Loadstar and Lankem. SLINTEC is committed to assist the local industries in improving and developing products to meet the demands of the international markets using nanotechnology and other advanced technology solutions.