Hong Kong Trade Development Council Deputy Executive Director Raymond Yip (left) with MPs Harsha de Silva, Rishad Bathiudeen, Eran Wickremaratne and EDB Chief Bandula Egodage - Pix by Upul Abayasekara
By Charumini de Silva
The Export Development Board (EDB) on Monday entered into three trade MoUs with Korea, Thailand and Hong Kong at the launch of the 28th CEOs meeting of the Asian Trade Promotion Forum (ATPF) in Colombo.
The three MoUs related to trade were signed between the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) and the Department of International Trade Promotion of Thailand (DITP) to strengthen institutional cooperation.
ATPF is a gathering of trade promotion organisations in the Asian region consisting of 24 member countries which was initiated by the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO). The objective of ATPF is to enhance trade in the region and strengthen relations between members.
The logo designed for the CEOs meeting in Sri Lanka was ceremonially launched by MP and former Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen under the patronage of newly-elected parliamentarians Eran Wickramaratne, Dr. Harsha de Silva and JETRO Chairman and CEO Hiroyuki Ishige.
Addressing the inauguration ceremony, Bathiudeen said as a recent entrant to the lower middle income ranks, Sri Lanka’s next stage of economic development as envisioned by the new Government was based on the social market economic model.
“Our new Government’s ambitious plan is to create one million jobs based on strengthening exports and getting more producers and associations directly involved in the process,” he added.
Bathiudeen highlighted that Sri Lanka needed to formulate strategies to shorten supply chains as well.
EDB Chairman and CEO Bandula Egodage said that the immediate strategic objective was to develop bilateral trade especially in terms of exports.
“Product and market diversification, value addition and the adoption of advanced technology are key approaches of EDB to enhance Lankan exports,” he said.
He also said that more trade promotion MoUs and cooperation were essential for expanding Sri Lanka’s exports.