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POSTED AT 10:17 AM 21-03-2019

Lanka eyes over US$ 3 bn FDI in 2019

Deputy Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade, Nalin Bandara and Managing Director, Agency for Development, Mangala Yapa at the BOI Picture by Sudath Malaweera

Sri Lanka will attract US$ 3 billion Foreign Direct Investments to Sri Lanka for 2019, Deputy Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade, Nalin Bandara said.

He said that the laying of foundation at Mirijjawila Export Processing Zone in Hambantota on Sunday (24) for an Oil Refinery and Cement bagging plant projects would bring in around US $ 4 billion which is the highest ever Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) record in the country.

“We expect 20% of this investment made this year. He said that that Sri Lanka attracted US$ 2.37 billion last year which is an increase of 37% as against the previous year. The Deputy Minister said that since the setting up of BOI in 1978 it has secured US$ 17 billion worth of FDI to Sri Lanka and out of which 34% was made during 2015 to 2018. The highest FDI of US$ 2.3 billion was recorded in 2018.

Bandara said that they also welcome the shift on FDI patterns. “Most of the investments made in 2018 and proposed to be made in 2019 are for manufacturing and service sector which would bring in more revenue to Sri Lanka through their exports. Previously most of them were for the infrastructure.”

The Oil Refinery complex is been set up after 1968 in the country. This is a 100% foreign JV investment from Singapore and the Sultanate of Oman Ministry of Oil and Gas. The total investment of this project is US$ 3,850 million. Allocated land extent for this project 200 acres which is been now cleared.

The Cement manufacturing plant is a JV investment between Ceylon Steel Corporation and Onyx Group of Companies, United Arab Emirates bring in US$ 100 million. The company is targeting at the local construction industry and would also have a Ready Mix Plant. Director BOI Mangala Yapa said that the Oil refinery would also build an oil tank form and then move to the manufacture of Lubricants.

He said that due to the exports of the oil refinery project there will be one ship calling over to Hambantota Port every week which would bring revenue to Sri Lanka. He also said the Singapore Sri Lanka FTA gave the confidence for investors to invest.

All concessions provided for both these investments were made according to Inland Revenue regulations and projects would be subject to regular ‘environmental checks.’

Spanning over 565 acres in total, the Mirijjawila Export Processing Zone consists of industrial blocks spread across in 338 acres with 309 acres already occupied by industries in commercial operation. “With these new two projects the total land area of the zone will be utilized productively,” he assured.

Shirajiv Sirimane