"The Sri Lankan boating industry, except for a few large scale manufacturers and pioneers, is lagging behind and needs support," he said.
The GTZ boat building technology improvement institute was ready to help.
It intends to have a fully-fledged training centre in the eastern port of Trincomalee, Herath said.
Despite the recession, sales of boats to overseas buyers had grown this year.
Anil Koswatte, chairman of the Export Development Board, said the island last year earned five billion rupees as export revenue from boat building.
"The current trend in Western boat markets is to source the fibre from developing countries, and do hull construction there. This is mainly due to lower manufacturing costs."
Sri Lanka's boat building industry is not diversified enough and is focused mainly on fishing boats.
But there was potential for leisure, adventure, sports craft, cruising, and racing sail boats.