The Sri Lanka Export Development Board has taken steps to establish Export Promotion Display and Sales Centre of EDB at the Bandaranaike International Airport, Katunayake.
The opening ceremony of this Export Promotion Display and Sales Centre of EDB at the Bandaranaike International Airport will take place on 7th February 2008 at the Katunayake Airport under the patronage of Hon. Prof. G.L. Pieris, the Minister of Export Development and International Trade and Hon. Chamal Rajapakse , Minister of Ports & Aviation and Irrigation & Water Management.
The establishment of Export Promotion and Display Centre is a significant effort initiated by the Sri Lanka Export Development Board under the purview of the Ministry of Export Development & International Trade to promote and develop products of SME’s displaying their products.
The development of export sector specially SMEs is a key area highlighted under the Mahinda Chinthanaya . The national policy based on Mahinda Chinthanaya , emphasizes the importance of the role played by the business community to help build the national economy and also provide various assistance to maintain their success.
Consequent to a request by the National Council for the Economic Development (NECD), the Government proposed to establish a permanent Display Centre at the Bandaranaike International Airport by the budget speech of 2005. In para 48 of the Budget Speech of 2005 , it was declared that the showroom space would be allocated at the arrival and departure lounges of the BIA and the exemption VAT applicable to imported goods purchased from the duty free shops for payment in foreign currency would be extended to locally supplied goods as means of popularizing Sri Lankan products.
As the apex state organization for export development, Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) was entrusted with the task of operating and managing the Centre at the airport.
The Sri Lanka Export Development Board being the responsible organization to implement this programme has made all efforts to be a reality involved in various activities during the last three years. SLEDB had various discussions and negotiations with various authorities to make this event a success.
The objective of the establishment of a permanent display centre at this Bandaranaike International Airport is to popularize Sri Lankan export products around the globe.
It is an acceptable factor that one of the best attractive places to display products for the purpose of promoting would be the airports and sea ports where the foreign tourists arrives and depart. Today, we have only one place where we can see the arrival and departure of foreigners ie., only Bandaranaike International Airport. Therefore, the opening of display centres of this nature at the airport is a new effort for promotion and development of exports. The target group of the Sri Lanka Display Centre is tourists and locals arriving and departing through Katunayake Airport. This will be a Sri Lankan product showcase for exportable products and will provide opportunities for the participating export companies to introduce and sell quality products.