Sri Lanka Shippers’ Council held its 50th Annual General Meeting recently. Considering the prevailing situation in the country, this year’s AGM was held as a virtual meeting connected through Microsoft Teams.
Suren Abeysekera was re-elected as the Chairman while Russell Juriansz and Imalka Kumarapeli were re-elected as the First and Second Vice Chairmen respectively for 2020/2021. Committee members representing 14 trade associations connected to international trade, 50+ individual members and past chairmen of the Council were scheduled to participate in this year’s AGM, making it an important event attracting the elite of Sri Lanka’s import and export sector involved in logistics and shipping.
The Sri Lanka Shippers’ Council has a 50+ year rich history as the apex body representing the interests of shippers in the island. It was the first National Shippers’ Council to be set up in Asia in March 1966 now having 14 product member associations and over 50 individual members representing almost all industries engaged in international trade making it one of the most vibrant councils in the country.
The Council’s engagement and contribution towards drafting some of the policies of national importance and its involvement in the reform process of border agency activities during the past years are noteworthy.
To name a few are; Amendments to the Sri Lanka Customs Ordinance, Implementations of Sri Lanka Customs automated processes, Establishing the Sri Lanka Customs’ Export Facilitation Centre, Drafting the blue print for the National Single Window, Trade Liberalisation measures and areas of Trade Facilitation, Preparation and implementation of National Export Strategy, Free Trade Agreements, National Trade Policy, Trade Information Portal, online payments cum e-signatures, drafting the National Policy for Maritime and Logistics and implementation of IMO 2020 low sulphur fuel cap.
The Council also actively supports the Sri Lankan Government’s vision of making Sri Lanka the logistics hub in the Asian region, which would result in the generation of enhanced economic activity, employment and wealth. As such, all Council activities have been planned and prepared to support this vision and facilitate international trade.