National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka

national chamber of exporters of sri lanka


Elvitigala Mawatha, Colombo 08, Sri Lanka

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“Resurrect Export Council of Ministers”

Resurrect the Export Council of Ministers, provide Public sector employees five year no pay leave and channel the youth of the country towards the business processing outsource sector (BPO) ,urged National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka (NCE) President Ravi Jayawardena addressing the 30th NCE Export Awards Ceremony press conference in Colombo on Tuesday.

Jayawardena said exporters have done yeoman service to the country despite facing a shortage of exchange, facing problems related to power and very high operational cost. With all these challenges exporters have done well in helping the nation and it’s quite appropriate the country recognize these achievements of exporters and encourage them to do well.

“At the outset I would like to highlight a very important statement made by the President. He said very categorically he believes that Sri Lanka should be developed as an export led economy. We are very humbled about it and very pleased. Although this is not the first time we are hearing it, during the past 10 to 15 years we haven’t heard from any head of State that he or she believes in an export-led economy. It’s a key thing to the NCE that the government in power believes in exports.”

The NCE Chief urged the government on implementing three matters, firstly Resurrect the Export Council of Ministers which was started during Minister Athulathmudali’s time where the head of State at that time was President J R Jayewardene who shared the meeting with all ministers, deputy ministers and secretaries round a table together with the exporters so that all export issues could be discussed and some were solved and some not but at least there was an opportunity for exporters to bring their grievances to the government.

Jayawardane said that he had forwarded a letter making the request to President Wickremesinghe and therefore requested to Resurrect the Export Council of Ministers because that was required if the country was believing in an export led economy.

He said when you say “work or go” there is repercussion if that person is a breadwinner because the family is going to be affected. On the other hand, the majority of the people were subsidizing 1.5 million of State sector employees and half of them are unproductive. He questioned why not give everyone in the public sector five years no pay leave irrespective of what they want to do, “ do a business, open a tea boutique, find employment in the private sector etc. By this the burden on the government could be reduced,” he said.

Jayawardane said the Aragalaya was done by very talented young people and now that they have gone back, he questioned as to what their future be and what the employment opportunities available to them were. He said that this has to be done in the shortest possible time and there is one thing that can be used to address it and that is the business processing outsource sector (BPO) where all that is needed is a desk, computer and chair.

There are so many establishments in the world looking to outsource their work. He questioned why not give that opportunity to the youth of the country and added that if they were given the opportunity now, they will be productive and useful citizens of this country.


Presentation: “Resurrect Export Council of Ministers”

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