Inventing Impasse

From automatic toilet flushing devices to automatic string hopper machines, Sri Lanka’s home made inventions are fascinating, but fall short when it comes to selling power. From automatic toilet flushing devices to automatic string hopper machines, Sri Lanka’s home made inventions are fascinating, but fall short when it comes to selling power. “Most of our local inventions are not commercially viable, and we are trying to make our inventors aware of the highly competitive market,” says B M Samarasinghe, Programme Officer, National Inventors’ Commission in an interview with Lanka Business Online.

In an extremely profit conscious age, the list of local innovations, consisting items like automatic string hopper machines, automatic water heaters and ultrasonic pest repellents, lacks yield potential.

While these maybe extremely useful devices, they don’t seem to attract investors, and when they do, some have a tendency to remain on the shelf.

Most often the inventor is too discouraged by high production costs to market it, or stops short of going through the hassle of getting a patent.

“Even after granting a patent, less than 10 percent of patents held by loc