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Sunday, 22 March 2015

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ICT industry targets US$ 1b in exports this year

Sri Lanka’s ICT industry is expected to reach US $ 1 billion in exports this year.

The sector’s contribution has significantly increased recording a 123 percent growth over the past five years.

The country has launched an ICT value survey to find out the national hi-tech exports it achieved in 2013-14.

“We have recognised the ICT industry to be a key player in our exports. We are looking at $1 billion in exports this year,” said Industry and Commerce Minister Rishad Bathiudeen.

The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) has embarked on a survey of ICT and BPM exports for the third time.

It is expected to demonstrate the progress made by the industry and to highlight its growing significance as a top export revenue generator for Sri Lanka.

While focusing on the capacity available for the industry, the survey also concentrates on global markets. The survey is being conducted with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

EDB Chairman and Chief Executive Bandula Egodage said, “To evaluate the progress of ICT and BPM exports, we need to continuously measure its growth and contribution to the economy. This survey will be instrumental in facilitating the industry to reach its highest potential.

The results of the survey will be useful to assess the status of the industry in relation to its competitors and be the basis for Government policy decisions in the future regarding the ICT industry”.

During the past five years, Sri Lanka’s global brand position improved significantly. AT Kearney ranked Sri Lanka among the top 25 destinations in its global ranking in the past three consecutive rankings.

Gartner ranked Sri Lanka among its top 30 global locations. IBM and Tholons ranked Sri Lanka at the top of their leader boards.Receiving the 'Outsourcing Destination of the Year' award from the National Outsourcing Association (NOA), UK twice in a row, was a validation of the tremendous progress that Sri Lanka has achieved.

Sri Lanka’s competitive advantage as a destination for doing business in the ICT and BPM sector is built around agility, cost, a niche talent base, ethics, cultural adaptability and superior quality of life.

On the BPM front, it continues to build on finance and accounting as its primary global niche. On the IT front, the competitive position on product engineering is now becoming a formidable advantage with many local companies having ownership of reputable software products. In 2013, Sri Lanka ICT export revenue stood at $ 719 million. The London Stock Exchange and HSBC are among the recipients of Lankan ICT support. Sri Lanka’s IT and BPM sector's 'Vision 2022' is to earn $5 billion in revenue, with 200,000 direct jobs and 1,000 start-ups.

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