Sri Lanka’s Trade Minister says three-year national strategy on boat building and nautical tourism soon
Daily FT: Fulfilling a long-felt need, the Government is taking steps to introduce a national strategy for boat building and the nautical tourism industry, to be rolled out over the next three-years.
“A boat building and nautical tourism development strategy compiled by industry experts will be presented to the Cabinet before the end of this year,” Trade Minister Bandula Gunawardena told the Daily FT.
Following the inauguration of the ‘Virtual Boat Show Sri Lanka 2021’ yesterday with boat building industry stakeholders and top officials of the Export Development Board (EDB), the Minister said that he was determined to develop this high potential sector which had been ignored by successive governments for decades.
Gunawardena said the three-year development strategy would be formulated by the Trade Ministry, Department of Commerce, EDB, Sri Lanka Tourism and other key organisations in the boat and ship building industry.
“Considering the high marine diversity and attracting upmarket global travellers, Sri Lanka has great potential for nautical tourism, yacht building, chartering and yacht operation in the region and beyond. The national strategy will endeavour to harness this potential to its maximum,” Gunawardena added.
He also said the post-pandemic boat building and nautical tourism industry had huge potential to revive the economy with much-needed foreign exchange earnings.
The National Export Strategy (NES) has identified boat building and its related services as one of the five key industries to expand and diversify Sri Lanka’s export basket and earnings. The aim of the NES is to increase export revenue to the value of US$ 500 million.
“Industry experts have assured to submit relevant development strategies within a month and the draft policy will be discussed among industry stakeholders for further refinement. Thereafter, the proposal will be submitted to the Cabinet of Ministers for approval and implementation,” the Trade Minister said.
Sri Lanka’s ongoing development programme and economic expansion have opened up new business/investment opportunities in the country. A lot of these opportunities have opened up in the manufacturing and exports sectors. These two sectors have recorded a steady growth even despite pandemic challenges. The many trade agreements as well as concessions enjoyed by the country have also helped boost these two sectors. Foreign businesses/investors could therefore confidently explore the growing business potential and opportunities in Sri Lanka’s manufacturing and exports sectors.
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