Packaging industry should be made priority exports support sector: Rishad

18 July 2014 06:30 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


In 2013, most recipient countries of FDI in South Asia experienced a significant decline in green field projects except for Sri Lanka. In that, the total announced green-field investments in South Asia, declined by a strong 38 percent-except for Sri Lanka where the investments remained at a high level of $1.3 billion, according to UNCTAD.

Latest international packaging research suggests that the global packaging industry which stood at $799 billion in 2012 is expected to grow at 4 percent per year till 2018

“I believe we should also encourage international FDI investments to the packaging sector so that its development, is made faster. Since packaging is a long term investment, green field investments are a good way forward since they can also transfer latest technologies. It is time that we recognize the packaging industry as a priority exports support sector,” said Industry and Commerce Minister Rishad Bathiudeen, addressing the inaugural event of the 17th edition of Sri Lanka’s top packaging expo “LANKAPACK 2014” at BMICH yesterday.

Organised by Sri Lanka Institute of Packaging, it is one of the most important International events in packaging, processing and material handling technology to be held in Colombo. Three large-scale Indian packaging firms, a Malaysian exhibitor, Japanese and Singaporean principals of some Sri Lankan packaging firms are among those taking part at this event which ends on July 20.

“Packaging is also an industry which is cross-cutting and fast moving. In fact, latest international packaging research suggests that the global packaging industry which stood at $799 billion in 2012 is expected to grow at 4 percent per year till 2018.

The global packaging industry sales are projected to increase to $ 824 billion by 2013,” said Minister Bathiudeen adding that “It is no secret of the importance of packaging in Sri Lanka’s international trade success. Good packaging also ensures the continuous presence of our products in the fast changing international markets.

“In 2009-2013, Sri Lanka’s print-based exports have increased by a strong 25 percent to $ 101 million.  Even the Ministry has increased its support to the packaging sector. During 2013 and this year we have spent more than $ 42,000 to assist this sector. In 2013, we have facilitated, two national level packaging awareness programmes, for SMEs with 50 of them taking part. In 2013 and 2014, we spent $ 10,100 for Sri Lanka Packaging Certificate Course, in association with SLIP and INGRIN. We are also supporting today’s Packaging event with no less than $ 15,300. Realising the importance of bringing in latest scientific and technological developments to this sector we have sponsored a free exhibition stall to the “Integrated Design Faculty of Architecture” of University of Moratuwa.”

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