North and south SMEs strengthen business and social links

Tuesday, 25 August 2015 01:46 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

GIZ partners with Ceylon Chamber of Commerce for SME-ProLink Program 

GIZ SME Development Program, together with the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce will launch ‘SME-ProLink: Unity Through Business’, an initiative to link the northern and southern SMEs to strengthen business and social relationships and promote unity and harmony among communities. The program will be held in Matara on 29 and 30 September. 

The Deutsche Gesellschaft fÜr Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce firmly believe that this initiative will create opportunities for SMEs in two provinces to build new market linkages, facilitate expansion of their businesses to other parts of the country and thereby support addressing some of the regional economic disparities faced by SMEs.   

During the SME-ProLink program, 30 SMEs from the Northern Province will meet, interact and share experiences with 30 SMEs from the Southern Province, along with technical service providers such as Sri Lanka Standards Institution (SLSI), universities and the corporates at one venue to exchange knowledge and to create linkages.   

‘SME-ProLink: Unity Through Business’ will be a two-day program targeting food and beverage sector SMEs who have been in the industry for more than two years and have minimum turnover of Rs. 2 million per annum to enhance their business/social linkages, expand business contacts, technology transfer and strengthen skills and capacities.

The event will focus on educating SMEs on improving quality of products and services provided, introduction of technology to enhance production capacities and certification. SME-ProLink will also provide a platform to have business to business meetings with entrepreneurs and corporate buyers, providing the SMEs with an opportunity to extend their market share.

Regional chambers in the Northern Province and the Southern Province will facilitate the program, when the initiative reaches its respective regions.

The Sri Lankan-German SME Development Program, implemented by GIZ in cooperation with Ministry of Finance, Sri Lanka, aims to support a cohesive policy framework enabling SMEs to grow in an inclusive and eco-friendly manner. Through a wide range of technical assistance, it helps enhance competitiveness of SMEs through technology transfer, innovation and improved access to finance. The program is funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) of Germany. 

The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, the partners of the GIZ in implementing its latest SME-ProLink Project is Sri Lanka’s foremost business Chamber, which has a rich history of 176 years of exemplary service to the business community. Started in the 18th century, primarily to serve the plantation sector, the Chamber has now graduated to the level to mark its presence in every key sector of the Sri Lankan economy and works tirelessly to help Sri Lanka promote trade, investment and tourism relationship with overseas countries.