Jul 312013

Sri Lanka’s Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) has welcomed the initiative by the government to declare Sri Lanka’s four main ports, Colombo, Hambantota, Trincomalee and Galle as ‘free ports’.

“The Chamber welcomes this initiative to declare Colombo and Hambantota as free ports and Katunayake, Koggala and Mirijjawila Export Processing Zones and Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport as bonded warehouses with significant tax concessions being offered for stipulated investments, subject to achieving defined export targets,” a CCC statement said.

It further stated that the CCC has always stood for the need to increase Sri Lanka’s exports and make Sri Lanka an export-centric nation to sustain a high growth momentum.

The statement also noted that time and again the chamber has highlighted the facilitation support required from the government to encourage exports.

 “We believe that this initiative lays the foundation for a paradigm shift in our economy to boost investments and exports, at a time when the Asian giants China, India and Japan are actively exploring opportunities to invest in Sri Lanka for varying reasons,” it said.

The declaration entitles enterprises which are 65 percent foreign-owned and operating through the specified areas for wide tax exemptions, including provisions under the Customs Ordinance and Exchange Control Act.

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