Sri Lanka is mulling a bigger role for private sector in the planned industry and commerce reforms-and Lankans of all hues are rallying round the leaders of the new consensual government, as declared on 09 September.
“I look forward to an increased role and support of the Lankan business, exports and investment communities in our next stage of industry and commerce development. As we enter a new era of social unity, Sri Lankans of all hues are rallying round the joint and consensual efforts of both leaders” said Rishad Bathiudeen (Minister of Industry and Commerce of Sri Lanka) on 09 September.
Minister Bathiudeen was addressing the large crowds that packed to witness his assumption of duties as the Minister of Industry and Commerce of Sri Lanka for the third consecutive time on 09 September at the Ministry premises in Colombo 3.
Minister Bathiudeen, the Vanni District MP, first took over the Industry and Commerce portfolio in 2011 (in the seventh Parliament) and was re-appointed for the second time in the same seventh Parliament after January 8 Presidential elections. His 09 September assumption (with the eighth Parliament) is the third in a row to the same portfolio. Joining the 09 September session were many reps from business, industry and investment communities of Sri Lanka, political figures, clergy from all major religions as well as Sinhalese, Tamil and Muslim political supporters from the Vanni District.
“With the formation of the consensual government of HE President Maithripala Sirisena and Hon Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, we are witnessing meaningful democracy in action in Sri Lanka. Sri Lankans are rallying round the joint and consensual efforts of both leaders. There are no more serious threats to our civil liberties as it were, and we thank both HE the President and Hon Prime Minister for their courageous leadership in the January 8 revolution” said Minister Bathiudeen and added:
‘As a new entrant to the lower middle income ranks Sri Lanka’s next stage of economic development as envisioned by the new government is based on the social market economic model. Under the social market economic model the government’s vision is to develop the economy through an ambitious five pillar concept and exports development. In fact exports and manufacturing are to play the lead role in our country’s rise within the middle income ranks. We want to enlist the private sector more and more, and I look forward to an increased role and support of the Lankan business, exports and investment communities in our next stage of industry and commerce development.”
Since taking over of Industry and Commerce in 2011 for the first time, Minister Bathiudeen has been in the forefront in representing Sri Lanka in several global, multilateral and regional foras. Among the many notable achievements was Minister Bathiudeen’s taking over of the Chairmanship of the South Asia Free Trade Area (SAFTA) Ministerial Council in August 2013. Minister Bathiudeen was also listed among the 500 most influential Muslim leaders in the 2013/14 Muslim500 global ranking. He was the fourth Sri Lankan to enter this ranking since 2010. (Press Release)