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Japanese giant Mitsubishi Corp. to wind up Lankan operations next month

10 February 2023 10:12 am - 41     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Japanese giant Mitsubishi Corporation has decided to wind up operations in Sri Lanka next month after being an integral part of bilateral ties and some of the country’s key infrastructure projects for nearly 60 years.

The closure of Colombo Office by Mitsubishi by 31 March has come as a big shock to the private sector, both local and foreign which described the move as a big setback for Sri Lanka.

Sources said for Mitsubishi, Sri Lanka was one of its first overseas offices as it contributed immensely towards the businesses and many Sri Lankan companies. It also played a significant role in the bilateral relationship between Japan and Sri Lanka.

Japan is Sri Lanka’s second largest lender with $ 2.46 billion outstanding as of September 2022.

A key reason to close the office is Sri Lanka’s default of external debt, adverse international ratings and economic outlook.

Mitsubishi operations was a key partner in several of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) funded projects.  

Relations between Sri Lanka and Japan have strained in recent years due to abrupt cancellation of several key projects including those involving Light Rail Track (LRT) and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) proposed by Japan.

At present, Mitsubishi Corp.’s Colombo office employs around 20 but its businesses and projects provided livelihoods to thousands in multiple sectors.(Daily FT)

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  Comments - 41

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  • Saman Friday, 10 February 2023 10:22 AM

    Whole country desasters been done by these Rajapaksha idiots. They can hide in out side country with all stolen money etc etc.

    Jude Friday, 10 February 2023 10:38 AM

    It's only the beginning, SL economic crises worsening!! The country is in point of no return!! Yeah!!

    Sokrates Friday, 10 February 2023 10:46 AM

    This is the payoff for Sri Lanka's failed economic policy and the behavior of the Rajapaksa clan towards Japan.

    Tax hike was the cause of them leaving Friday, 10 February 2023 06:57 PM

    No, it is only to do with the new tax policy. Many in private sector being saying now the after tax return is so much more limited only matter of time before businesses from overseas start closing ship. Put another way not worth time of Japan management to look at Sri Lanka operations with such limited (after tax) returns. Other country operations better worth their attention.

    Jagath Leanage Friday, 10 February 2023 10:50 AM

    Oh my goodness . Such a good company leaving Sri Lanka after sixty years in operations . So sad .

    Sunil Friday, 10 February 2023 10:51 AM

    When other prospective investors hear about this, they would come in their hoards to a country where nothing can be done without colossal amounts of money changing hands illegally and unethically.

    RR Friday, 10 February 2023 10:57 AM


    Silva Friday, 10 February 2023 11:00 AM

    Thank you Rajapakshas for the cancellation of LRT project and antagonizing Japan. Here now people reap the brunt of arrogant stupid anarchic regime.

    sam Friday, 10 February 2023 11:10 AM

    Sad for us. It may be the start of things to come

    Ptrt Friday, 10 February 2023 11:10 AM

    Bad Omen For Sri Lanka

    Concerned citizen Friday, 10 February 2023 11:22 AM

    It was not the Rajapakse's that close the LRT project Champika Ranawaka and Lakshman Kirella were responsible for this and also for the central expressway. Thanks to the Rajapakses the war was ended and development was taking shape and you people bought in Yahapalanaya government... Now don't cry, bite the bullet!!!!!

    BuffaloaCitizen Friday, 10 February 2023 03:59 PM

    Unconcerned Citizen - It is fellows like you who are a majority of fools in this country. Rajapakse nor any of the earlier leaders who waged war against the northern Tamils are hero's, they are of high ignorance failing to understand the rights of another community native to Sri Lanka. If that level of understanding was there, then another State would have been formed like how Telengana was born last few months ago inside Andra Pradesh. Both Tamils and Sinhalese would have lived amicably within a united Sri Lanka. But fools like you like to believe what Weerawansa, Gamanpila, Gnanasara and all those Political Priests say and now the country is destroyed. Soveriegnity of H'tota port is with China for 99y. All Sinhalese are leaving the country like rats and now those Jaffna Tamil Diaspora are laughing because at one time you guys harrassed and chased them out of the country. Fate is slow but definitely sure. When are you leaving?

    Biyagama Friday, 10 February 2023 11:23 AM

    Very good move. Take this as a travel advise, please do not visit this island anymore

    Mahila Friday, 10 February 2023 11:26 AM

    Wood Pecker (WP), keeps on pecking as it fancies on any tree it comes across in this world and continues at will!! Until when it does that on a Banana or Plantain tree, it comes a "CROPPER"!?? Good lesson for Sri Lankans!!!??? All must give special thanks to the R. Bros., Inc. for their wholehearted adventurous drama!!! SL Lost a worthwhile project to reduce travelling time from Malabe to fort and an inexpensive but advanced mode of Transport system for Metro Colombo!!? Japan, JAICA didn't lose anything and Bangladesh, gained a new Metro in Jan 2023! Big mouth and empty 'Swollen' HEAD pots!!!?? No Worthwhile outcome!! Same effect of BAN CHEMICAL FERT., GO ORGANIC AND END UP STARVING!

    S.Sivs Friday, 10 February 2023 11:29 AM

    We can ask some politicians like the ones still opposed to 13A to go to these investors and lure them to come back. Or else they should do the next thing collect their pension and stay at home.

    Wiseman Friday, 10 February 2023 11:32 AM

    We need a change of Govt soon to reverse the economic blunder.

    Tak Tik Tuk Friday, 10 February 2023 11:36 AM

    Well done Ranil Rajapaksha!

    Devaka Friday, 10 February 2023 11:49 AM

    This is the down stream impact of the Rajapakse regime. Some countries do not give powers that be pocket money on the side. If there is a level playing field, clean operators leave. RW has been working very hard to reestablish trust in the Japan Sri Lanka relationship which was in utter tatters. Rebuilding trust is a long and hard journey, far far more difficult and challenging than destroying it.

    Devaka Friday, 10 February 2023 12:03 PM

    Should read: If there is no level playing field, clean operators will leave.

    minura Friday, 10 February 2023 12:06 PM

    tell persy to go worship china, apparently that will solve everything

    alam Friday, 10 February 2023 12:09 PM

    its not only mitsui, most arab middle east funds which normally give grants to sri lanka, have stopped due to monks and racist behaviour. also the pathetic cowadice of the people is no help.

    Rip Winkle Friday, 10 February 2023 01:07 PM

    Totally avoidable if we'd had a good leader. It's as simple as that.

    Concerned Citizen Friday, 10 February 2023 01:16 PM

    RW should intervene to prevent this from happening. Probably the only person around in the administration who can do that. Greedy Rajapakshas are a curse to this country.

    RW is the one who put up taxes to chase them away Friday, 10 February 2023 06:59 PM

    RW is the one who raised the tax rate. He knowingly increased taxes as requested by IMF. If he continued past decades of money printing unlimited and got more loan from China and India he could keep taxes low, and businesses would keep doors open as after tax profits were then better than nothing.

    Rukmal seneviratne Friday, 10 February 2023 02:29 PM

    Sad day for srilanka

    Punchi Friday, 10 February 2023 02:36 PM

    When we have friends like Pakistan and China who needs Japan and India

    LAL DE SELIVA Friday, 10 February 2023 03:27 PM


    Kuthbuddin gulam hussain Friday, 10 February 2023 04:46 PM

    It's all attractions people should understand present system doesn't help in attracting meaningfull investment in order to do that you need highly qualified professionals to come of it other wise you will see these also leaving Uni lever, Toyota,Mitsui, are to be a name a few give the LRT to Japan and Airport project also i think you can turn the table around if you liberalis all the sectors and don't pork your finger putting price control and complicate the tax system And open a duty-free trading point this will help a lot.

    M Fernando Friday, 10 February 2023 06:04 PM

    A vote of confidence for Ranils policies and his "foreign friends"

    Japan shows its true face and intentions Friday, 10 February 2023 06:54 PM

    Japan say they want to help us, but really it all about pushing back against their arch enemy China. About time our citizens sees that money making interests of Japan trump over all their so called friendship with us.

    Nihal Friday, 10 February 2023 06:56 PM

    Every one including the big companies will leave Sri Lanka for good and we still talk about whether to implement 13th amendment or not and create division amongst us and take the country backwards in 10 years again and do nothing but protest

    13A as to be implement or war for independance is must for Tamils Sunday, 12 February 2023 08:15 PM

    Tamil people most definitely want 13A fully implemented. The partial implementation with LG polls is barely enough. If Thera are against Tamil freedoms, of course Tamils will look forward to become independent of Colombo government. Until Portuguese broke the Jaffna Kingdom, the Buddhists of the South had not had control of Jaffna for many hundres of years. Tamil people do not want Buddhist protection to remain the Constitution since it is an insult to their religion.

    Tupac Friday, 10 February 2023 07:35 PM

    This is really good news for srilanka 2023 RW will save Srilanka from all debts

    Shelly Friday, 10 February 2023 08:53 PM

    This should come as no surprise as a result of poor relations between the two countries. Japan has always been a faithful friend to Sri Lanka for decades. But Sri Lanka chose to hang out with their new friends. It seems to be a Sri Lankan character trait.

    Sam Silva Friday, 10 February 2023 09:25 PM

    We borrowed from one of the poorest country , bungaldesh $200 million and we are not paying them. How pathetic it is. However we boast we are the best.

    Ranil Saturday, 11 February 2023 01:33 AM

    This is awesome people! Now the Volkswagen investment has one less competitor to worry about. Asiyaawe ARSEcharya!!!

    Waco Saturday, 11 February 2023 08:54 AM

    Dissolve the Parliament and go for a General Election. Ranil must step down . He had no mandate, hence where is Democracy in Sri Lanka?

    chams Saturday, 11 February 2023 11:47 AM

    Nimal Siripala will take over the company!

    Jaymapathi Saturday, 11 February 2023 01:25 PM

    Mitsubishi is in Sri Lanka is to sell their products. Not to generate foreign exchange for us. Due to import restriction it is not worth for them to stay in Sri Lanka. Lot of other companies also outsource their services to third party and move out if the business is not profitable. The day import restriction is lifted definitely they come back. That because not to help us, just to sell their products.

    T. Yamashita Saturday, 11 February 2023 06:51 PM

    This is not Mitsubishi Motors. Mitsubishi Corporation was in Sri Lanka only to do trading. They have supplied equipment and parts for various operations. Now they wind up mainly because construction is not happening in most countries.

    Mahila Sunday, 12 February 2023 04:23 AM

    Mitsubishi Corporation (MC) is the Holding or Parent Company and all others MMC, MHI etc., are are the subsidiaries!!?? MC office in CMB has overall control and coordinates activities of subsidiary activities in SL!!?? They work coordinated and not separately! Such as, linking of foreign (JAICA/EXIM Bank) Projects Finance and Grants of equipment/vehicles and associated services (Training) to government to government (Police for example) projects. This process would become non-existent, if not difficult as communication (Language) becomes an impediment and supporting services, access to spare parts for specialised equipment in projects, which in the past MC has facilitated and provided expeditiously at nominal extra cost, if any!! If construction downturn worldwide (true) is the reason, why worldwide MC branches than CMB aren't closing down in droves!!?? And, we in Sri Lanka are singled out!!?? SINISTER!!

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