French Businesses Keen On Investing In Sri Lanka’s Infrastructure Development

The Sri Lanka – France Business Council (SLFBC) which functions under the aegis of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce held its 10th Annual General Meeting the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce recently.

The Council was inaugurated on 4th February 2004 with a primary objective of promoting trade, investment, tourism and services between Sri Lanka and France and to promote mutual understanding and strengthen the relationships between Sri Lanka and France.

His Excellency Jean Paul Monchau, Ambassador of France and Patron of SLFBC graced the occasion as the Chief Guest.  Congratulating the appointed CommitteeHis Excellency remarked on how the investment and trade links between Sri Lanka and France has improved in the recent times. He said, several French companies have shown an interest towards taking part in the ongoing infrastructure development activities in Sri Lanka. Paul Monchau also explained how Sri Lanka’s growing Tourism industry can help promote the country’s existing trade and investment potential.

Dilipan Tyagarajah, President, Alstom was re-elected as the President of SLFBC for the Year 2014-2015. Asanka Ratnayake, Director, Hayleys PLC and Senaka Amerasinghe, Managing Director, Carmart Ltd. Were elected as the two Vice Presidents for the year 2014-2015. Addressing the members, Tyagarajah highlighted some of the significant activities undertaken by the Council which includes; the discussion on the successfully concluded Symposium on French Expertise in Urban Development in July 2013 which was organized in association with the Economic Service of the Embassy of France, the Welcome Reception organized for the new Ambassador for France to Sri Lanka His Excellency Jean-Paul Monchau on 28th of October at Cinnamon Lakeside and the Council also tied up with the European Chamber of Commerce and organized a French Day – Vive La France on the 12th of December 2013 which incorporated a number of traditional French activities including wine and cheese tasting.

Tyagarajah ensured that the Council will continue to closely work with the Economic Service of the Embassy of France, Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris, Board of Investments of Sri Lanka and Export Development Board in order to facilitate the promotion of bi-lateral trade relationship between Sri Lanka and France. The President also announced the resignation of Mr. Jean-Louis Poli from the Economic Service of the Embassy of France and thanked him for all his support to the SLFBC throughout the years.

The Committee members for the Year 2014-2015 included Mr. Samantha Rajapaksa, Managing Director, Associated Motorways (Pvt) Ltd., Upul Pieris, Director, CMA-CGM Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., Nuwan Wimalana, CEO, Delmege Forsyth & Co. Ltd., Anurag Kak, Managing Director, Lafarge Mahaweli Cement (Pvt) Ltd. Shiraz Karunaratne, Chief Executive Officer, Noyon Lanka (Pvt) Ltd., MS. Indika Dassanayaka, Sales Manager, Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel

Past President Nirmali Samaratunga, Chairperson and Joint Managing Director, Mackwoods Ltd. Jean-Louis POLI, Economic Counsellor of the French Trade Commission, Nilupul De Silva, Director Promotions, Board of Investment, Jeevani Siriwardena, Director – Market Development, Sri Lanka Export Development Board, Mr. Mahesh Amalean, Chairman, MAS Holdings Ltd. would also serve the Committee by Invitation.      

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