Sri Lanka Celebrates 50 year partnership with Singapore

The 23rd Annual General Meeting of the Sri Lanka – Singapore Business Council (SLSBC) of The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce was held on 23rd July 2020 via Zoom. The SLSBC was inaugurated in 1997 under the aegis of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce with the objective of promoting trade, investments, tourism and services between Sri Lanka and Singapore. Mr. Prajeeth Balasubramaniam, Managing Partner, BOVCapital Ltd was elected as the President of the Council for the year 2020-2021.  Mr Janaka Gunasekara – Deputy Managing Director, Agri Inputs, A Baur & Company Limited,  Mr. Tan Beng Chuan – Group General Manager, Prima Ceylon (Pvt) Ltd and Mr. Shiluka Gunawardena, Partner KPMG were elected as Vice Presidents of the Council. In his address he mentioned that in the last 2 years, under the able Leadership of Mr. Rohitha Mendis, the council moved with a greater vigor.  He further mentioned that the bench mark keeps improving each year and the council hopes to continue this trend. Despite the many obstacles the council will continue to have events via webinars focusing on sectors in line with the country’s needs. The partnerships we already have with the Singapore Manufacturer’s Association, The Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Singapore Business Federation, Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry and  the Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce & Industry will help boost the bilateral trade and meet the objectives he added.  In addition, SLSBC works very closely with Enterprise Singapore which is the Government body promoting Singapore companies to venture out. Under the new leadership of the Council, the first webinar was held on 27th July 2020 to celebrate the 50 years diplomatic partnership with Singapore and Sri Lanka under the topic of Food and Digitalization – Accelerated Key Trends Driving the Growth in Sri Lanka. Topics covered during the webinar included digitalization of businesses, food supply resilience in Singapore and food security. At the webinar the Sri Lankan High Commissioner to Singapore Sashikala Premawardhane said that food security was among the areas in which the two countries could deepen cooperation. According to the Sri Lanka High Commission the total bilateral trade last year was valued at US$883 million (S$1.21 billion) with Sri Lankan exports valued at US$115 million. In line with it, the council along with the help of EDB has identified a few industries that they could help boost, and will form subcommittees for each sector. General members of the council with expertise in each area will be invited to join the subcommittee. The identified sectors  are Agriculture, Healthcare, Startups, Logistics, Finance, Education, Plastic and Rubber and Gems and Jewelry. Aitken Spence Cargo (Pvt) Ltd, Kalhari Enterprises, MAC Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC, Spear International (Pvt) Ltd, Sudath Perera Associates, Tengri Aero Industries (Pvt) Ltd were elected from the membership to serve on the Executive Committee of the Council. Further details regarding membership of the Council could be obtained from the Secretariat of the Sri Lanka – Singapore Business Council of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, No. 50, Navam Mawatha, Colombo 2. E-mail: dinithi@chamber.lk or Tel.: 011-5588861, 5588800. Seated (L to R): Mr. Tan Beng Chuan – Vice President, Mr. Rohitha Mendis – Immediate Past President, Mr. Prajeeth Balasubramaniam – President, Mr. Janaka Gunasekera – Vice President, and Mr. Shiluka Gunawardena – Vice President. Standing (L to R): Mr. Jerome Brohier, Vice President, Aitken Spence Cargo (Pvt) Ltd., Mr. Indhra Kaushal Rajapaksa, Chairman/Group Managing Director, Kalhari Enterprises.,  Ms. Kumi Miranda, Head of Leasing, Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC., Mr. Tilak Gunawardana, Chief Financial Officer, MAC Holdings (Pvt) Ltd,. Mr. Shamil Mendis, Chairman/Managing Director, Spear International (Pvt) Ltd., Mr. Dushyantha Perera, Partner, Sudath Perera Associates., Mr. Eric Wikramanayake, Chairman, Tengri Aero Industries (pvt) Ltd and Ms. Dinithi Dias, Manager, Business Councils, Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

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