“Due to the efforts of prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and president Maithripala Sirisena, Sri Lanka will once again be awarded with the GSP Plus. This will be a major advantage for the industry and it could take the country to the apparel export target of $20 billion by 2020,” Gamage said at the inauguration of three-day Apparel Industry Suppliers Exhibition (AISEX) in Colombo.
The apparel industry contributes more than 45 per cent to the total merchandise exports from Sri Lanka, but the value addition is still around 50 per cent, Gamage said.
He stressed on encouraging more apparel accessories to be made in Sri Lanka, and added that AISEX 2016 would help towards that goal.
“Sri Lankans should also look at more R&D for the industry to be more competitive,” he added.
AISEX has been revised after seven years, following a visit by an EU delegation and the increased prospect of Sri Lanka achieving GSP Plus.
The event is being organised by Lanka Exhibition and Conference Services Ltd (LECS) and supported and endorsed by the Sri Lanka Apparel Institute (SLAI), Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF), Sri Lanka Institute of Textile and Apparel (SLITA), and the ministry of industry and commerce. (RKS)
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