Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment says promotions for online services ‘bear fruit’. - Opportunity Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment says promotions for online services ‘bear fruit’.

Sri Lanka’s Board of Investment says promotions for online services ‘bear fruit’.

The Morning: In a bid to curtail excess expenditure and facilitate customer touchpoints, the host of digitised and paperless services adopted by the Information Technology (IT) Department in collaboration with other departments of the Board of Investment (BOI) has a proven track record of success as evidenced through the experience of a local investor, the BOI noted, issuing a statement.
MAS Intimates (Pvt.) Ltd. Senior Consultant Prasantha Chandralal articulated: “We have tremendously enjoyed and benefited from the online systems introduced by the BOI, which have helped us do our businesses effectively and efficiently, saving time and cost with the least use of papers. The online platform related to import and export Customs Declarations (CUSDEC) is a good case in point, where the system has been expedited to obtain speedy approvals and make payments online.”
Elaborating on the system, Chandralal said that earlier, he had to bring all relevant documents manually to the BOI office, which took at least eight hours to finalise the process. Now, the relevant documents can be submitted via Asycuda Customs Computer System, which takes only five minutes to complete.
“All in all, the introduction of online services has not only boosted our business but has also upped our exports, causing a rise in export earnings. Besides, this has prevented malpractices and eliminated undue inconveniences. These online facilities have vastly helped us and our intimates do business without a hitch during the pandemic period,” he noted.
Chandralal, thus, invited fellow investors to experience these smooth operations offered by the BOI in the interest of the convenience of investors.
Furthermore, the IT department has introduced an online system to integrate with the Defence Ministry for the renewal of visas of existing investors, with the recommendation made by the BOI to the Defence Ministry. Additionally, the spouse and the dependents of the investors also become eligible to apply for visas under the online system.
Moreover, the BOI official website, which was earlier outsourced, is now being handled by the IT department, saving substantial amounts to the organisation and setting an example for other state institutions.
Commenting on the online services, BOI Chairman Raja Edirisuriya, said: “The implementation of these online platforms is yet another milestone in the journey of digital service enablement. Here, I want to make a special mention of the contribution by our IT department and other respective departments towards making these efforts a reality and a success. The BOI continues to drive digital transformations, which is evident and actively contribute to the business sector in a backdrop where the world increasingly embraces digital economy.”
In addition, the procedure where companies signing agreements with the BOI and embarking on new projects were earlier required to periodically submit reports – such as performance and evaluation reports, updates on employment generation, and audited financial statements – manually to the BOI has now been facilitated by a system developed by the IT department to submit the said reports online, which are then managed and reviewed by the BOI Monitoring Department.
Another important move initiated by the IT department is the launch of a system where the details of the zones could be viewed via Google Maps, enabling investors to exactly find the vacant and filled land plots within the zones so as to start out new projects.
Meanwhile, talking about the steps that are underway, he noted the IT department is making arrangements to set up a fully computerised system where all functions that come under the Human Resources Department such as recruitment, are carried out online.
At the same time, plans are also underway to integrate with the Department of Immigration and Emigration in order to finalise the visa recommendation programme, which the BOI has already linked to the Defence Ministry.
OSL take:
With Sri Lanka working towards becoming an emerging business destination in the South Asian region, authorities are focused on improving the ease of doing business environment in the country. Sri Lanka’s geographical positioning in the Indian Ocean and the many trade agreements as well as trade concessions enjoyed by the country have also helped boost the country’s image as a growing business destination. The government of Sri Lanka and all key state owned entities engaged in foreign investment promotion in the country is focused on increasing efficiency and convenience to do business with Sri Lanka by promoting its operations through online platforms. While foreign businesses/investors explore the growing business/investment opportunities in Sri Lanka, they could also be ensured of being able to carry out their business affairs effectively and conveniently. Also, businesses could also explore the opportunities in developing Sri Lanka’s digital platforms due to the rapid expansions in the ICT and digital infrastructure development sectors.

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Article Code : VBS/AT/09082022/X_2

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