October 20, 2019
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    From buyer driven to producer driven networks

    September 15, 2018

    The Sri Lankan government is lowering import tariffs and removing border restrictions to encourage more foreign investments and know-how that will increase higher-value exports and fast-track economic growth, State Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs, Dr Harsha De Silva said.The country must diversify exports and shift to making more complex, high-value products in future, as Thailand and Vietnam have done, instead of continuing to export simple, low-value products,

    “We need technical expertise; knowhow is crucial for growth. We need to move from buyer driven to producer driven production networks, as intermediate goods are the ones that trade the most,” he told an economic forum organized by Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Chamber of Commerce in Colombo yesterday.

    He spoke on the theme ‘Turnaround; Shifting Gear from Slow to Fast Track’. “We need investments to come in. We need to lower border taxes so production networks can be a reality. That’s why we are removing para tariffs and border restrictions.”De Silva said new immigration laws are coming with Cabinet approval that will give visas for companies which employ specialists and other experts and that will help transfer technology.

    He added erecting walls around the country should not be done. “We need more connections. We need integration. We should focus more on the Indian Ocean region than South Asia. Free trade agreements and economic zones will pave way to rapid economic growth. Many centuries ago, we were a prosperous country, because we were engaged in global trade during that era.”

    “It is not possible for us to carry on growth if we do not make a turnaround; we have to change the way we do business. We can learn from our own experiences and from our competitors.”

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