Germany mulls more trade opportunities with Lanka
As Sri Lanka and the leading economy of the EU, the Federal Republic
of Germany, mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations, the
Eurozone leader is looking to enhance its profile in Sri Lanka
"I too believe that there is strong unrealised potential for trade
and investment cooperation between the two countries as we celebrate the
60th anniversary of bilateral relations. A top German investment
delegation will visit Colombo this October," said German Ambassador to
Sri Lanka, Dr. Jürgen Morhard when he paid a courtesy call on Minister
of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen at the EDB premises in
At the 2013 DAW Asia Pacific Forum at Maritim Hotel in Frankfurt on
February 25, the Immediate Past President of DAW German-Asian Business
Circle (Deutsch-Asiatischer Wirtschaftskreis e. V), R A Ekkehard Stein
said that DAW will send a representative team of German investors to
study emerging opportunities in Sri Lanka. "The team would visit Sri
Lanka this August or somewhat later."
"Dr. Morhard, did not specify the details of the investment
delegation arriving in October. Several notable German private sector
giants were in attendance at the 2013 DAW Asia Pacific Forum in
Frankfurt, where Vietnam and Sri Lanka, the only two Asian economies
invited to the Frankfurt session, made presentations to a group of
potential German investors and business ventures seeking to expand to
new destinations in Asia," an Industry and Commerce spokesman said.
Among the companies present were Eurex Frankfurt AG, Duetsche Borse
Group, IVP Group Germany GmbH, Asico Handels GmbH, Mazars GmbH, Adam
Opel AG and Rigging Service GmbH.
Germany is the leading Eurozone investor in Sri Lanka with 170
investment projects in the country. German investments in Sri Lanka are
protected by the bilateral Investment Protection Guarantee Agreement.
Among leading German firms in Sri Lanka are BASF Finlay and Kramsky
"On behalf of our government, I extend our thanks to the
Deutsch-Asiatischer Wirtschaftskreis e. V and the German government for
giving the opportunity to Sri Lanka to showcase its new upswing at the
2013 DAW Asia Pacific Forum," said Minister Bathiudeen.
"As we celebrate the 60th anniversary of our bilateral relations, I
realise that there is strong potential for trade and investment between
the two countries that we can jointly explore," he said.
"We encourage German firms to invest in our rare earth elements (REE)
and mineral sand. We like Germany's high industrial expertise and
know-how that can enhance Sri Lanka's mineral sand sector. This is a
sector we believe that urgently needs value addition, to capitalise on
the emerging global opportunities presented by this commodity," the
"We too are exploring Lanka's REE and mineral sand sector," said Dr.
Morhard, and added, "I am already talking with a German firm regarding
investing in Sri Lanka's REE and mineral sand sector."
Not only top German mining groups such as Deutsche Rohstoff AG, but
even leading German energy firms such as Siemens AG are keen consumers
of REE and mineral sand in bulk.
In 2012, Germany purchased $ 0.91 million worth of REE and mineral
sand from Sri Lanka of which 92% consisted of graphite. In the same
year, Sri Lanka's overall rare earth and mineral exports to the world
was valued at $ 42.7 million, an increase of 30% from $ 32.86 million in
2011. 65% of Y2012 exports consisted of mineral sand followed by silica
and quarts (20%), graphite (10%), mica (3%) and other natural sands
China was the lead buyer of Lankan mineral sand in 2012. The lead
buyer of 'other natural sands' was India.