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Trade balance with the Maldives favourable

The new office-bearers of the Sri Lanka-Maldives Bilateral Business Council. Pic: Vipula Amarasinghe

Exports from Sri Lanka to the Maldives have increased remarkably. From 2010 to 2012 exports from Sri Lanka to the Republic of Maldives have been higher than imports in favour of Sri Lanka.

Maldivian visitors to Sri Lanka have increased from 44,018 in 2011 to 47,572 in 2012, said Sri Lanka-Maldives Bilateral Business Council of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (SLMBBC) President Hussain S. Hashim at the sixth annual general meeting of the SLMBBC recently.

"We also look forward to receiving Maldivian Government tender notices that appear in Dhivehi language translated into English through the Maldivian High Commission enabling Sri Lankan companies to forward their bidding documents on time," he said.

"Transparent policies are required for companies to set up offices in the Republic of Maldives. Streamlining these regulations would no doubt assist more Sri Lankan businesses to conduct their business operations in Maldives.

"Lack of support or mechanism to solve legal issues faced by Sri Lankan companies when dealing with Maldivian counterparts cause frustration. We call upon the ambassador to consider setting up of a Commercial Mediation Centre as an alternate means of resolving trade disputes.

"Both Governments should strongly consider initiating a combined tourism promotional campaign to attract tourists from China and the Middle East to visit our island nations. "The SLMBBC was inaugurated on May 25, 2007 under the aegis of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce at its 19th bilateral business council to promote trade, investment and tourism between Sri Lanka and the Maldives.

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