UAE invites Sri Lanka to pivotal investment meeting

Friday, 14 January 2011 00:30 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

By Cheranka Mendis

The UAE Government yesterday extended an invitation to the local business community to experience the Annual Investment Meeting to be held in Dubai.

The meeting, scheduled to be held from 10 to 12 May, would be an ideal platform for the business community, providing an opportunity for the private and State sector to interact, formulate partnerships and look at investment opportunities both for Sri Lanka and for overseas assignments.

Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishard Bathuideen with UAE’s Ministry of Trade official Dawood Al Shezawi in Colombo yesterday. Sri Lanka’s Ambassador in UAE Sarath Wijesinghe is also present – Pic by Upul Abayasekara

Two officials of the UAE’s Ministry of Trade – Dawood Al Shezawi and Emaad Ishaq – who stopped by for a one-day visit on their way to Indonesia yesterday met local business leaders at a seminar on investment promotion between Sri Lanka and the UAE, held at HNB Tower and extended the invitation to the meeting.

The meeting, which would attract business leaders and state sector personnel from a number of countries such as Turkey, Malaysia, Poland, China, India and Africa, targets 30 to 40 government representations and business delegations.

Some 50 to 100 persons from each country are said to participate, according to the size of the country and its requirements.

“It would tighten links between Eastern and Western Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East,” stated Al Shezawi, explaining that the meeting would feature four key aspects – an exhibition, investor club, leadership roundtable and a symposium.

“It is the first of its kind to be held in the Middle East and the focus is to explore investment opportunities in emerging markets. It would facilitate a wider scope of interaction between the two key driving forces in the world economy – the prospective investors and the decision makers from existing and emerging markets,” he asserted.

Ishaq noted that the benefits of the meeting would be advantageous for the advancement of Sri Lanka’s future economic development. Sri Lankans participating in the event would be able to receive firsthand information about and realistic insights into prospective foreign investment destinations of interest, including a real-time assessment of risks, fiscal liabilities and taxation as well as critical statistics on local market trends and actual demand for services and business.

He asserted that Sri Lanka and the UAE could work out a number of investment projects, which could simultaneously benefit both countries.

“The UAE and Sri Lanka can partner and identify how to leverage the Free Trade Zones of Sri Lanka,” Ishaq added.

The UAE has 31 free trade zones, which include a knowledge village, media village and internet village.