Shangri La

CEAT Kelani Holdings Managing Director Ravi Dadlani (right) and Lanka Ashok Leyland CEO Umesh Gautham exchange the OEM agreement

Oct 10 2006 (LBO) – A lack of land could stand in the way of Sri Lanka clinching top Business Process Outsourcing contracts, the country’s ICT Agency says. The island is competing with neighboring India and other regional countries for a slice of the global 11.5 billion dollar BPO business, selling on its strengths of low cost labour and tax incentives.

But a lack of large extents of land equipped with the necessary infrastructure, could be a bottleneck in trying to ramp up Sri Lanka’s outsourcing industry to accommodate large projects.

“We are lobbying with the government on a master plan to alienate land to develop BPO cities around Colombo and in the regions. This is crucial,” Suresh Bartlett, Program Director, Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA), said late Monday.

Sri Lanka is on a shortlist of 15 areas by a global consultancy firm looking to outsource its finance and accountancy functions to the region, but is competing with India and Pakistan.

“They want an extent of 100,000 square feet of land to set up a facility for 1000 people. We don’t have this as yet but we have identified land and are trying to alienat

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