Sri Lanka, Thailand FTA feasibility to conclude by August

Thai FTA

Jan 18, 2017 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is looking at purchasing sugar from Thailand, while the feasibility study for the Free Trade Agreement with Thailand is set to conclude by August 2017, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce said.

Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen met with Thai counterpart Apiradi Tantraporn, Thai consumer goods exporters to Sri Lanka, and a leading sugar exporting company Mitrphol, during the APTA sessions.

“Sri Lankan sugar importers have decided to halt importing sugar from Brazil as cocaine is smuggled in sugar containers,” Bathiudeen said.

“So we will explore the possibility of importing sugar from Thailand. We have asked the company to provide information on sugar prices and the capacity they can supply.”

The feasibility study on the FTA with Thailand will be completed by August this year and the dates for the sub committee meetings will be informed, officials said.

Bathiudeen requested technical assistance in the areas of gem and jewelry, food processing, agriculture, electronics, automobile components.

The Thai Commerce Minister mentioned that their government will continue support for jewelry designing and provide support to identify companies that wish to invest in dried fruits in Sri Lanka.

Regarding agricultural cooperation between the two countries, she agreed to seek assistance of the Thailand International Cooperation Agency to bring agriculture experts to Sri Lanka.