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High-profile EU delegation due next week to discuss GSP Plus

12 January 2016 05:14 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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A high-profile mission from the European Union (EU) headquarters in Brussels comprising of officials from the European Commission (EC) and the European External Action Service (EEAS) will be visiting Sri Lanka from January 19 to 22, in order to discuss various issues with the Sri Lankan government, including GSP Plus. 

Sri Lanka lost the EU Generalized System of Tariff Preferences-Plus (GSP Plus) benefit back in 2010 and Sri Lanka’s new government is keen to reapply for this concession.

The EU is Sri Lanka’s largest trading partner. Approximately 32 percent of Sri Lanka’s total exports go to the EU. 

On the occasion of this visit, the European Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka (ECCSL) in collaboration with the Apparel Exporters’ Association and the delegation of the European Union to Sri Lanka and the Maldives will be organising a breakfast seminar on January 22, 2016, at Hilton Colombo Residencies (JAIC) from 8:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

The main focus of this seminar will be on the possibility of Sri Lanka regaining the GSP Plus.  

The key speakers at this event will be Nikos Zaimis – Deputy Head of Unit at the Directorate General for Trade, Sustainable Development and General System of Preferences (GSP) at the EC, who will address the participants on the key features of the GSP Plus scheme, as well as provide an insight into what Sri Lanka needs to do to regain the GSP Plus. 

Andreas Julin, the Desk Officer for Sri Lanka at the Directorate General for Trade at the EC in Brussels, will speak on EU-Sri Lanka trade. 

Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Dr. Harsha de Silva will speak on the Sri Lankan government’s approach to trade with the EU. 

International Trade State Minister Sujeewa Senasinghe and Development Strategies and International Trade Minister Malik Samarawickrama will be part of the panel of experts at the seminar. 

Hirdaramani Group of Companies Director Mahesh Hirdaramani will speak on the impact of the GSP Plus loss on the apparel sector and the benefits of Sri Lanka regaining GSP Plus from the private sector perspective.  

Institute of Policy studies (IPS) Executive Director Dr. Saman Kelegama will provide a policy overview on Sri Lanka’s trade with the EU.
This event will provide a unique opportunity for the business community to directly interact with the EU’s trade policymakers. For registrations and further information on this seminar please contact the ECCSL by email: info@eccsl.lk or call Manik on 077-3408569 or Gayashi on 077-3317978.   
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