The government yesterday dismissed a claim that it is planning to import high end luxury cars for the Commonwealth meeting in November.
External Affairs Ministry in statement said the media reports and statements by interested parties that Rolls Royce and BMW cars will be imported at a heavy cost to be used for the forthcoming CHOGM in November 2013 are baseless and fictitious, as no importation of cars is being contemplated by the government for this Conference.
"All expenditure in relation to CHOGM 2013 will be met from existing budgetary provisions, and additional funds for this purpose will not be resorted to," the Ministry said.
The External Affairs Ministry said the CHOGM 2013 will be an opportunity to showcase the developments in Sri Lanka following a three decade separatist terrorist conflict and the vast economic opportunities available in the country.
"The Commonwealth Business Forum, which attracts extensive participation both from within and outside the Commonwealth, will serve as a springboard for Sri Lanka to promote trade and investment and further enhance economic cooperation. Resources allocated to the relevant government agencies for promotional activities will be fully utilized within the country towards this end. Preparation of investment projects and sectors for cooperation is already under way, and the response is encouraging for participation at the Commonwealth Business Forum later this year," the statement said.
The Ministry said the objective of the government with regard to the outcome of CHOGM 2013 is to derive the maximum benefit for the people of the country by making full use of a unique opportunity.
"In this context, it is regrettable to observe a negative attitude from some quarters, considering that this event is of a national character and worthy of support across party lines," it added.