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A visit of leading entrepreneurs from Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce (SGCCI) offers increased prospects of increased Indian investment and trade.

 

Representatives of the Southern Gujarat Chamber of Commerce (SGCCI) were hosted by Hon. Malik Samarawickrama Minister of Development strategies and Investment Promotion at this Ministry, for an interactive discussion.

Assisting the Minister were Mr. S T Kodikara, Secretary, Ministry of Development Strategies and International Trade, Mr. Mangala Yapa, Chairman of the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka, and senior officials from the BOI and from the Ministry, who participated at this discussion. The discussions centered on enhancing Indian investments and trade, particularly from the Southern Gujarat area to Sri Lanka.

This visit was a result of a recent official mission to Gujarat by Minister Samarawickrama and the BOI including Mr. Mangala Yapa, the Board’s Chairman, senior BOI officials and leading local entrepreneurs. The Minister also held discussions with the Chief Minister of Gujarat.

Gujarat is the world leader in the production (35%) and export (60%) of cotton. The State is also the third largest producer of denim material. Hence possibilities of co-operation with Sri Lanka’s vibrant apparel industry are considerable.

The Business Delegation consisted 07 members including the past and the present President of SGCCI. It was lead by Mr. Ketan Paragli Desai, the current President. The delegation whose members are engaged in Engineering Manufacturing, Jewellery, Organic Fertilizer, Solar Solutions, Diamond cutting and polishing as wells as in trading, expressed a keen interest in investing in projects in those sectors in Sri Lanka.

SGCCI is a leading chamber that has over the years built strong international connections and signed Memoranda of Understanding with business chambers in the USA, Indonesia and Malawi.

The SGCCI is one of the oldest and the most reputed Chambers of Commerce of India. It is the oldest apex body of Gujarat with a total focus on growth and development of Trade and Industry in the Southern Gujarat Region. SGCCI has been consistently working to provide quality service to its 9,000 strong membership, to grow qualitatively and quantitatively to make the South Gujarat Region a powerful economic force capable of taking on global challenges by meeting the most discerning world standards.

While welcoming the visiting delegation, Minister Samarawickrama briefed the Gujarat side on the efforts made by the Sri Lankan government to build an economic climate which is investor friendly. He commended the capabilities of the members of SGCCI and urged them to strengthen their ties with Sri Lanka.

Given the very large scale of many of India’s enterprises, the Minister stressed the need for Indian and Sri Lankan enterprises to work together in setting up and creating greater opportunities in the MSMEs and the SMEs sectors in the country.

The members of the Gujarat delegation stated that they would carry throughout their 9,000 strong membership and other stakeholders in India and indeed internationally, the positive message that “Sri Lanka is safe to visit and to do business with”.

 

Dilip S.Samarasinghe
Director (Media & Publicity)

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