Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council holds AGM; looks for more trade, investments


Seated from left: Advisor Tilak De Zoysa, Japanese Ambassador Mizukoshi Hideaki, President Mahen Kariyawasan, Advisor Deva Rodrigo, Julianne Boulton Standing: Revanke De Silva, Athulla R F Edirisinghe, Rohan Pallewatta, Neela Marikkar, Ruwan Waidyaratne, Rohitha Mendis, Shamil Mendis, Chanaka Kariyapperuma, Sarath De Costa, Muthukumaraswamy Raghuraman, Mohamed Amr, and Sagara Gunawardena

The recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council, conducted under the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, marked an important occasion for strengthening economic ties between the two nations. The event saw the presence of Japanese Ambassador Mizukoshi Hideaki as the esteemed Chief Guest, signifying the significance of the council’s efforts in fostering bilateral relations.

Expanding Trade and Investments

Mahen Kariyawasan, the newly elected President of the Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council, expressed optimism in his speech. He highlighted the potential for increased Japanese trade and investments with the nation’s stability and ongoing economic recovery. Kariyawasan extended his gratitude to Japan for its support in stabilizing Sri Lanka’s external debt and facilitating recovery efforts.

Deepening the Bond of Friendship

During his speech, Kariyawasan emphasized the strong friendship between Sri Lanka and Japan. He expressed his appreciation for the continued support of Ambassador Mizukoshi Hideaki, Deputy Katsuki Kotaro, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador in Japan Rodney Perera, and H. Tanaka from the Sri Lanka Japan Chamber of Commerce.

Building Bilateral Cooperation

Kariyawasan recalled a significant event during President Ranil Wickremesinghe’s visit to Tokyo, where a productive business session was organized by the Japan Sri Lanka Economic Cooperation Committee. He highlighted the keen interest shown by the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry in fostering further bilateral cooperation.

“They have assured us that as soon as the agreements are in place, they will arrange a mission to Colombo. This is a very encouraging prospect for us,” said Kariyawasan, who also serves as the Managing Director of Andrew The Travel Company.

Expo 2025: A Platform for Sri Lankan Businesses

The upcoming Expo 2025 in Osaka presents a promising opportunity for Sri Lankan companies to showcase their products and services on an international stage. Kariyawasan pledged that the Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council would collaborate closely with the authorities to ensure the success of this event.

Election of office-bearers

Apart from Mahen Kariyawasan assuming the role of President, the AGM witnessed the election of Vice Presidents and Committee Members, ushering in a diverse team to drive the council’s mission forward.

Vice Presidents:

  • Ruwan Waidyaratne, Managing Director, Hayleys Advantis Ltd.
  • Athulla R F Edirisinghe, Director, Hirohama Ceylon Ltd.
  • Rohitha Mendis, Chairman, Prudential Shipping Lines Ltd.
  • Chanaka Kariyapperuma, Proprietor, ASOL Traders
  • Sarath De Costa, Chairman and Managing Director, Amano Lanka Engineering Ltd.

Committee Members:

  • Brandix Apparel Ltd. (Muthukumaraswamy Raghuraman, Consultant)
  • Dentsu Grant Ltd. (Neela Marikkar, Chairperson/MD)
  • Heritage Teas Ltd. (Revanke De Silva, Director)
  • Lanka Harness Ltd. (Rohan Pallewatta, Executive Chairman)
  • Venora International Projects Ltd. (Sagara Gunawardena, Chairman and Managing Director)
  • Spear International Ltd. (Shamil Mendis, Chairman and Managing Director)
  • Vidullanka PLC (Mohamed Amr, Manager – Finance and Administration)

The newly elected team, comprising experienced professionals from various industries, is expected to play a pivotal role in driving the council’s objectives and fostering even stronger economic ties between Sri Lanka and Japan.

As the Sri Lanka-Japan Business Council looks ahead to an era of increased cooperation and prosperity, its members are committed to solidifying the enduring friendship between the two nations and exploring new avenues for mutual growth.

Source: Daily FT

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