Receivers of the Special Project Awards -Vavuniya North Fruit Growers’ Cooperative Society Ltd, Vinayagapuram Farmers’ Cooperative Society Ltd, Iranaimatha Nagar Fishermen’s Cooperative Society Ltd, C R Exports (Pvt) Ltd, HJS Condiments Limited, A. S. Agri Exports (Pvt) Ltd, Lanka Organics (Pvt.) Ltd, Neil Fernando and Co. (Pvt.) Ltd, &Saaraketha Holdings (PVT) Ltd
The Council of the National Chamber of Exporters presented Special Awards this year related to projects implemented by the Chamber which has a bearing on socio economic development in addition to exports.
This project was implemented in the North of Sri Lanka covering the districts of Kilinochchi, Vauniya, and Mulaitivu in collaboration with the ‘Local Empowerment for Economic Development (LEED) project supported by the International Labour Organizaton (ILO), and financed by Austrad of the Australian Government.
The activities of the project covered two sectors, namely agriculture, and fisheries. In the agriculture sector, the activities concentrated on fruits and vegetables while in the fisheries sector the activities covered boat building, as well as processing of sea foods.
Under the project, producers of fruits and vegetables in the agriculture sector were linked with member exporters of the Chamber in the South of Sri Lanka to enable them to market their produce in both unprocessed and processed forms in the international markets.
As a result the economic benefits of exporting accrue to the producers in the North, thereby improving their incomes and socio economic wellbeing. On the other hand, the exporters in the South benefit by obtaining a regular supply of products, under contractual arrangements, to export to International markets.
Under this project six member companies of the Chamber have already obtained their requirements from producer groups in the North comprising farmer organizations, and Co-operative societies in which the producers are members. A significant feature of the project is its impact, and contribution to the efforts at reconciliation between the people’s of the North and South followings the civil conflicts which ended in 2009.
With a view to encourage participants under the project and to enhance its activities, the Council of the Chamber conferred Special Project Awards to selected producer groups in the North and exporters in the South. Accordingly, leaders of three producer groups, and six export companies, were presented the Special Awards.
It is noteworthy that a member company of the Chamber ‘Expact Corrugated Cartons Pvt. Ltd.’ had come forward as a sponsor of the project awards to motivate and encourage more participants, both producers and exporters, to join in the activities of the project. Representing ILO,Dong Lin Li-Head of LEED Project & Nihal Devagiri-National Programme Manager of LEED Project also joined the sponsor to give away the awards.
The NCE has also prepared a directory containing the names and contact of producers in the North with details of their products as well as information on the relevant State Authorities in the North which provide support services. The directory also contains contact details of member exporters that produce agricultural and fisheries products, with a view to facilitate more linkages between the producers and exporters, to expand activities under the project.