Sri Lanka-Indonesia Business Council holds 21st AGM
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 00:01
The Sri Lanka-Indonesia Business Council (SLIBC) which functions under the aegis of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce held its 21st Annual General Meeting recently at Taj Samudra Hotel, recently. SLIBC was established in 1991 with a view to promote trade, investment, tourism and services between the two countries.
Harimawan Suyitno, Ambassador of the Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia and Patron of the SLIBC was the Chief Guest at this occasion while Sri Widowati the new Country Director for ADB graced the occasion as the keynote speaker. Congratulating Biala on his re-election as the president, the ambassador stated the business council is playing a vital role in growing bi-lateral business relationship between Sri Lanka and Indonesia and expressed his appreciation for the effort put by the president in strengthening the bilateral relationship between the two countries.
“Our bilateral history has seen many ups and downs, business wise although it remains relatively positive but I personally feel we could have done more and there still are plenty untapped potentials,” stated the Ambassador.
The trade between the two countries during the year 2013 stands at $ 400 million.
Suyitno underlined that the Ministry of Trade of the Republic of Indonesia will be hosting the 29th Trade Expo Indonesia from 8-12 October in Jakarta. This will be the largest expo hosted by Indonesia and it will showcase more than 1,000 leading companies from various sectors. He invited the Sri Lankan business community to utilise this opportunity to gain access to the vast business potential in Indonesia.
Addressing the Members, Widowati spoke about ADB’s perspective of Sri Lanka’s growing economy. She emphasised the need for developing Infrastructure to develop the economy and said Sri Lanka is certainly on the right path at this moment. Widowati also highlighted some of the various arms into which ADB will be extending its support which include – corporate development projects and infrastructural development projects, financing the water supply systems in rural areas of the country and also supporting expansion of the energy sector in Sri Lanka.
ISIN Lanka Ltd. Director/General Manager Jatinder Biala was re-elected as the President of SLIBC for the year 2014-2015. In his address, Biala mentioned that Indonesia is one of the very few countries in the world who has constantly maintained a healthy economic growth and particularly with the new Government in Indonesia; he expects the Indonesian economy to continue growing.
Biala highlighted the participation of the SLIBC in the recently concluded Roundtable Discussion – Sharing Prospects and Business Opportunities in Sri Lanka, which took place in the month of April, 2014 in Jakarta, organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Indonesia. He also extended his gratitude to the Ambassador and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Indonesia for taking a lead role and organising such an important event.
He further mentioned about the SLIBC executive committee’s meeting with Anoja Wijesekara, who was the Ambassador designate to Indonesia at the time of the meeting, and who is now serving as the Sri Lankan Ambassador in Indonesia. “It is all about good and constructive relationships and with our positive approach we have cultivated a very healthy relationship with her and certainly it will help us mutually in the long run,” stated Biala.
He said SLIBC will aggressively engage in exploiting business opportunities and will continue to provide assistance to set-up new business ventures as well.
The two Vice Presidents are Ceyline Holdings Ltd Managing Director – Commercial Cluster Jayantha Rathnayake and Serendib Flour Mills Ltd. Manager International Trade Kalinga Wijesekara.
Civaro Lanka Ltd., Douglas & Sons Ltd., Daya Constructions Ltd., Geocyc Ltd., AB Mauri Lanka Ltd. and Avalon Enterprises Ltd. were elected to the SLIBC Committee 2014-2015. The Past Presidents: Anton Godfrey, T. Someswaran, Patrick Rodrigo, Hussain S. Hashim, Nihal Gooneratne and Senaka Amerasinghe will also serve on the committee.