Sri Lanka to sign a FTA with Singapore during Prime Minister’s visit

Sri Lanka will sign a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Singapore during Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’s visit to the island next week, according to his Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Hsien Loong will undertake an official visit to Sri Lanka from 22-24 January 2018 at the invitation of President Maithripala Sirisena.

Recalling a trade mission he led to Singapore in 2016, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe said the FTA would be signed during Prime Minister Lee’s visit.

“In 2016, I led a trade mission to Singapore to secure a Free Trade Agreement – to boost our economy. On Monday, after much hard work, we will welcome PM Lee Hsien Loong to Sri Lanka to sign that Free Trade Agreement,” Wickremesinghe said in a Twitter post.

Sri Lanka’s Cabinet of Ministers this week granted approved to sign the proposed Free Trade Agreement between Sri Lanka and Singapore.

According to a cabinet statement, experts in both countries have made deliberations and reached consensus regarding the provisions incorporated in the Free Trade Agreement proposed to be signed between Sri Lanka and Singapore.

The proposed Free Trade Agreement contains provisions relating to the fields of trade in goods, trade in services, liberalization of services, investment, government procurement, competition etc.

The FTA is expected to create a more favorable environment for investments and as such, to enhance foreign direct investments from Singapore to Sri Lanka.

In addition to meeting with the Sri Lankan President and Prime Minister for bilateral discussions, the visiting Prime Minister is also scheduled to attend a Business Forum in which leading businesspersons and investors from both Singapore and Sri Lanka will be present.

Sri Lanka’s Foreign Affairs Ministry said that this is the first time in 13 years that a Singaporean Prime Minister undertakes an official visit to Sri Lanka.

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