Demand from Sri Lankan private sector and exporters to join Department of Commerce's pioneering session on exporting to Nordic region's most dynamic market held on 15 February surged by 14 February evening with more than 100 corporates and institutions thronging to register for the rare event.
"This is great news for our trade-way-forward with Sweden" said an upbeat Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen on 14 February in Colombo. Minister Bathiudeen was addressing New Delhi based Swedish Political Affairs Counsellor Anna Uggla, who is leading a three member experts team from Swedish National Board of Trade (SNBT) to Colombo on the evening of 14 February. The SNBT team will commence their Exporting to Sweden session with the Department of Commerce in the morning of 15 February at World Trade Centre's BoI Auditorium. Joining the 14 February evening meeting was Secretary General of Sweden-Sri Lanka Business Council Leif Ohlson and Secretary to Ministry of Ministry of Industry and Commerce Chinthana Lokuhetti, among others.
"We thank the government of Sweden for helping us in this pioneering event. We warmly welcome members of Swedish National Board of Trade (SNBT) who are here to help our exporters and would be exporters to get into this dynamic market" said Minister Bathiudeen, and added: "I am pleased to say that as of today 14 February evening more than 100 Sri Lankan firms and government agencies have registered for the 15 February session in Colombo by the Department of Commerce with SNBT. This is great news for our trade-way-forward with Sweden! We are also looking for Sweden's support to improve our agro and food sector technologies to increase our quality of exports to Sweden. This Forum can help increase the quality of our exports and volumes, to Sweden."
Sri Lanka's exports to Sweden surged marginally from US$ 64 million (in 2015) to US$ 69 million in 2016.
"We are looking to help Sri Lankan exporters to better position for Swedish market and to improve the quality of exports as well" responded Counsellor Anna Uggla, and added: "Sri Lanka's organic food supplies are impressive for Swedish market and very attractive. We want to continue-we are looking to train Lankan exporters on "mandatory requirements for exporting to Sweden" in February 15 session and this is essential for anyone trying to enter our competitive market. Our agency, the SNBT, is one of the pioneering international trade advisory bodies in the world-starting way back in 1651!"
Sweden is the largest economy in the Nordic region. It is the 30th largest export destination of Sri Lanka and 8th largest destination of EU region for Sri Lanka's exports.
Main Lankan exports to Sweden include Apparel, Rubber Products, Tea, Coconut Kernel Based Value Added Products, Activated Carbon, Toys, Ceramic Ornaments, and processed food. February 15 Export to Sweden session is scheduled to pay special attention on exporting Lankan food products to Sweden.