Singaporean companies explore investment opportunities in Sri Lanka

2018-02-14 09:54:04


The Singapore Business Mission to Sri Lanka organised by the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) together with International Enterprise Singapore (IES) and Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SICCI) recently held a seminar on doing business in Sri Lanka, at Paramount Tower, Nawala.  

Mission leader, SBF Chairman and Pacific International Lines Managing Director S.S. Teo said, “This is the federation’s fourth visit to Sri Lanka since 2008, with our last visit in June 2016. Today, we have a 32-strong delegation comprising 24 companies and organisations across the ICT, real estate development, hospitality, infrastructure, logistics and general trade sectors.

The Singapore business community fully welcomes and supports the Sri Lanka-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (SLSFTA). With this agreement in place, there will be an even greater impetus for business activities between Singapore and Sri Lanka.”

Dr. Rasitha Wickramasinghe from Stax Inc. provided an economic overview of doing business in Sri Lanka and sectoral business opportunities in the country. He highlighted the key aspects of post-war Sri Lanka and also compared Sri Lanka with its peers in various segments. 

Highlighting the legal considerations and framework of the country, Sudath Perera Associates Partner – Investments and M&A Head Dushyantha Perera covered the key aspects of understanding the legal system in Sri Lanka, explaining the process of setting up a business in Sri Lanka and laws and regulations governing foreign investments. 

KPMG Sri Lanka Tax and Regulatory Principal Suresh Perera then briefed the audience on the tax framework of the country, industry-specific tax implications, trade agreements and double tax avoidance agreements. The recently gazetted Inland Revenue Act was also discussed in detail by Perera. 

Thereafter, the delegates/representatives of Singapore companies operating in Sri Lanka shared their experiences in doing business in Sri Lanka, where they discussed about understanding the Sri Lankan consumer and business mindset, marketing and distribution in Sri Lanka and working with Sri Lankan partners and 
employees successfully. 

The panel consisted of CHEC Port City Chief Sales and Marketing Officer Liang Thow Ming, PIL-EML Managing Director Sriyal Dissanayake and SecuriState Managing Director Malaravan Ron. The panel was moderated by Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP Partner Chandra 
Mohan Rethnam.

Representatives from Singapore and Sri Lankan companies attended the Singapore Business Mission to discuss opportunities for deeper Singapore-Sri Lanka collaboration, network and connect with potential partners and clients through business matching sessions.  

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