The Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Swiss Import Promotion Programme (SIPPO) which operates under the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) of Switzerland last week.
Ambassador for Switzerland in Sri Lanka, Dominik Furgler and Chairman and CEO, EDB, Suresh D. de Mel signed the MoU on behalf of the organisations.
SIPPO will facilitate EDB to carry out comprehensive market research studies for selected Sri Lankan export product sectors viz processed food, sustainable fish and sea food and value-added textiles aiming to better integrate Sri Lanka into world trade.
SIPPO will conduct the market research studies through competent international sector experts to provide first-hand information on market access requirements to the member countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) including Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and selected EU countries especially in the Eastern Europe.
The proposed Market Studies will cover the areas of present trade regulations, non-tariff measures and technical regulations, market access requirements, packaging and labelling, quality standards and certifications, trade related environmental and social requirements, pricing, logistics, information on distribution channels and market demand analysis related to each selected sector for the identified markets in the EU Region.
The sectoral market study reports will also include details of main buyers in the identified countries and this will result in Sri Lankan exporters to expand market access and enhance market share in the European region.
The research findings will be disseminated among Sri Lankan export community and related private and public sector organisations via series of online sectoral webinars. The reports will also be made available in the EDB website for the benefit of the public.
Currently, over 6,000 products are eligible for zero duty access to the EU region under EU GSP+ scheme. Sri Lanka exported good to the value of USD 2, 948 mn to the EU region last year which contributed 24% of Sri Lanka’s total export earnings amounting to US$ 12.2 bn in 2021. Sri Lanka has potential to expand the market share by entering into new/untapped markets enjoying the zero duty market access offered the EU GSP+ scheme.