Sri Lankan government to take steps to fast track Foreign Direct Investments
The government of Sri Lanka is reportedly looking at introducing new measures to fast-track Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) in order to fully realise a US$ 2.5 billion target.
A senior minister of the government has told the media that among the new measures is the appointment of two special committees within Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment (BOI) to speed up the approval process to start FDI projects without delays. The two committees are the BOI Project Inspection Committee and the Land Allocation Committee.
“Investors have to obtain over 20 approvals and licences from a number of agencies for an investment. Due to the lack of coordination between these institutions, the investment approval process takes considerable time,” Sri Lanka’s Investment Promotion Minister Prasanna Ranatunga has told the Daily FT.
“The Project Monitoring Committee has taken immediate steps to approve all investment applications in collaboration with the relevant departments of the Board. The Land Allocation Committee will evaluate the BOI land in accordance with technical and financial criteria and properly transfer the land,” the Minister has revealed.
A taskforce has been set up to facilitate single-window investments while online investment facilities have been improved and a front office desk has been set up to expedite the approval process.
“The front office will accept the proposals of investors who wish to invest in the country and the relevant offices are responsible for the preparation of the BOIs,” the Minister added.
According to him, the new initiatives are being implemented with the objective of providing independent and transparent evaluation of all investments in the country as well as boosting FDIs in accordance with Sri Lanka’s President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s policies.
Sri Lankan authorities are focused on attracting foreign direct investments for all key economic sectors in the country. Authorities have taken many steps including the offering of incentives to potential foreign investors. Also, Sri Lanka’s geographical positioning in the Indian Ocean, the ease of doing business environment in the country and the many trade agreements as well as trade concessions enjoyed by the country have made it an attractive business destination in the South Asian region.
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