It is expected that Canada will be a well-known trade partner in the business circle of Sri Lanka in another 10 years time, Canada -Sri Lanka Business Council President Upali Obeysekere said.
Speaking at a seminar on "Building a strategic platform to promote Sri Lankan exports to the lucrative Canadian market" Mr. Obeysekere said, "Sri Lankan exporters need to find new ways to take the fullest advantage of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to capture a fair share of trade in Canada as well as USA. We need to market our products to main stream national markets rather than looking at smaller segments where Sri Lankan exporters have enormous opportunities.
Total merchandise trade between Sri Lanka and Canada stood at $ 476.3 million in 2010 with Canadian merchandise imports at $ 127.6 million, 52.9 percent of which consisted of woven and knit apparel.
Canadian merchandise exports to Sri Lanka for 2010 recorded $ 348.6 million. Canada has been able to capture a significant share of the Sri Lankan merchandise import market for wheat as well as other agriculture products.
Almost 92.6 percent of Canadian merchandise exports to Sri Lanka in 2010 were in wheat and leguminous vegetables which included dry peas and beans.
Wheat exports remain the single most valuable item exported by Canada to Sri Lanka, representing 74.9 percent of Canadian merchandise exports to the country.