The head of the visiting German Business Delegation to Sri Lanka, and the Parliamentary State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Energy, Mr. Uwe Beckmeyer called on Sri Lanka’s President Maithripala Sirisena at his residence on Monday.
The visit of the Business Delegation took place subsequent to the President’s recent visit of Germany, during which Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that she will send a Business Delegation to explore business and investment opportunities in Sri Lanka. The President welcomed the positive response on the part of Germany to send this delegation to Sri Lanka, that will enhance business to business relationships (B2B) upon meeting with Sri Lankan business community.
During the meeting, President Maithripala Sirisena explained to Beckmeyer how Sri Lanka is making steady progress in strengthening democracy and reconciliation through appointing new independent commissions, strengthening existing commissions, such as human rights commission, bribery and corruption commission, audit commission etc.
Underling the priority given economic development for achieving sustainable development and peace, the President said, ‘Economic development is the basis upon which strong democracy and lasting peace can be built’. He welcomed the fact Germany is supporting vocational training in Sri Lanka and also the fact the German investments have created more than 10,000 direct jobs in the country.
Beckmeyer, while appreciating the progress Sri Lanka has achieved internationally and locally during a relatively short period of time, emphasized the German’s government commitment to bring Sri Lankan and German businesses more and more close to each other, and that the present visit of the delegation was a part of this initiative. Parliamentary State Secretary Beckmeyer expressed his hopes for continued goodwill and healthy business relations.
Sirisena assured that he will instruct the Ministers and Officers to review the progress of business development between Sri Lanka and Germany every three months and report to him, upon which further strengthening of bilateral economic ties will be possible.
Currently, many German factories operate in the country and generate nearly 130 billion rupees worth bilateral trade. While German car brands dominate 95% of the premium car market in the country, Sri Lanka enjoys a roughly 22 billion positive trade balance.