Monday, November 28, 2022

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BOI reveals export earnings of existing enterprises following the COPF bashing

In the wake of annihilation from the Committee on Public Finance (COPF) over the failure to provide a proper analysis on 12 year tax holiday and other concessions to be given to a company and later getting the green light for it, the Board of Investment (BOI) has made public the details of export earnings of its existing enterprises.

The extremely poor state of affairs in granting tax concessions transpired when the BOI officials failed to justify why HCL Technologies, an India-based tech company, which already has commissioned operations in Sri Lanka and COPF has denied the approval of the relevant order on Monday(03).

The (COPF) has approved the Order under the Strategic Development Project Act, No. 14 of 2008 published under the Extraordinary Gazette Notification 2291/25 after the Board of Investment (BOI) provided a proper analysis earlier yesterday (Tuesday04).

HCL Technologies first entered Sri Lanka in September 2020 commissioning its Global Development Centre and the following year in August 2021, they entered into an agreement with Sri Lanka’s John Keells PLC to occupy 80 percent space in their 30-storey Grade A office building

However, the BOI, which is entrusted with the task of investment promotion , should come up before the public by revealing its contribution for the promotion and attracting FDI in to the country during past two years in order to clear its image already tarnished by its poor performance before the COPF, several economic analysts said.

BOI enterprises accounted for US $ 6.6 billion of merchandise exports during the January-September period, up 16 percent compared to the corresponding period of 2021, the apex investment promotion agency said.

According to the Export Development Board data, the merchandise export income to Sri Lanka during the January-August period was US $ 8.8 billion, up 12 percent from a year ago.

The export data for October are yet to be published. According to the BOI, 15 key performing sectors, which have shown over 19 percent of average growth in exports during the said period,

“The BOI has always been the forerunner of Sri Lanka’s export industry, contributing over 65 percent to the country’s overall export earnings and 85 percent to the national industrial export earnings,” said BOI Chairman Raja Edirisuriya.

Meanwhile, he said the BOI is currently focusing on both short-term as well as long-term strategic measures, which would result in increased FDI inflows to the country.

“As a short-term strategy is to attract the much-needed FDI, attracting and facilitating reinvestment by existing companies while repositioning Sri Lanka as a high-tech FDI destination based on Industry 4.0.

It is also developing new zones dedicated to priority sectors and digitisation of the entire investor experience to ensure seamless delivery of services to investors can be identified as long-term strategic initiatives,” Edirisuriya underlined.

BOI Director General Renuka M. Weerakone remains positive about the investment targets set for this year with the expected easing in the ongoing economic crisis.

All these are pep talks but no results and no performance, a leading economic analyst who is very familiar with BOI affairs said adding that Sri Lanka will not face the bankrupt situation and dollar crisis if this institution fulfilled its obligations in the past and present .

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