As bilateral trade with China crossed $ 3 Bn, one of the biggest ever trade and business delegations from Sri Lanka flew on Wednesday (June 4) to attend the 22nd Kunming International Fair in China which is scheduled to commence tomorrow (06).
Sri Lanka has been taking part in this event when it was held for the first time in Beijing in 2007. Minister of Industry and Commerce, Rishad Bathiudeen said that with one of the biggest EDB supported delegations, it is envisaged to obtain good results this year as well.
Minister Bathiudeen was speaking to his top officials prior to his departure on Wednesday to take part in the second China–South Asia Expo and 22nd Kunming Fair held in Kunming, China. In this tour, the EDB functioning under Minister Bathiudeen is facilitating no less than 118 Lankan business reps –one of the biggest B2B delegations to Kunming from Sri Lanka who are joining Minister Bathiudeen and his team of five other officials.
The Kunming Fair has become one of the four top annual events (such as the Canton Fair) in China’s trade calendar. Due to its high prominence in the trillion dollar GDP nation, the Kunming Fair has become the second biggest annual fair in the South West China region. Sri Lanka has consistently been one of the strongest South Asian participants at this expo.
The 118 companies and businesses facilitated by EDB represent such diverse product and service sectors as tea, gem and jewelry, arts, crafts and handicrafts, coconut fiber, ayurvedic and herbal products, and even gem cutting and polishing. The fair is jointly hosted by China’s Ministry of Commerce, the Governments of Yunnan, Sichuan, Chongqing, Guizhou, Guangxi and Tibet, and Chengdu Municipal (People’s) Government.
The total trade turnover between China and South Asia rose to $ 92 Bn in 2012. According to the Department of Commerce, China’s trade with Sri Lanka stood at US $ 3,084.22 Mn ($ 3 Bn) in 2013.