23rd 19th January 2012, www.dailynews.lk, By Shirajiv Sirimane, Picture By Saliya Rupasinghe
The first stage of the Atchuveli industrial zone would be ready by March this year. Several local and foreign investors have expressed interest to commence operations. The President of The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Yarlpanam, K.Poornachandran said that the first stage would include the developing of 25 acres and a further 67 acres would be added to the second stage. ‘Under the first stage 40 companies would operate and the total direct and indirect employment from the project would be over 6,000.’
One of the biggest advantages similar to the Hambantota airport and harbour industrial zones would be the close proximity of an international harbour and airport. “The Palali airport which is to be elevated to an international airportand Kankesanthurai harbour are located less than 10 kilometres to the zone giving investors the opportunity for exports,” he said speaking at the opening of the three day Jaffna International Trade Fair (JITF) which was concluded last Sunday at Alfred Dureiappa Stadium.
He requested the Indian government to open credit line through EXIM so that small and medium entrepreneurs could obtain financial assistance to expand. He also appealed to expedite rebuilding the railway to Jaffna.
“The JITF also helped them find new markets,” he said. “Year 2012 is completely development oriented, and therefore the trade fair is also focused on development.”
Government Agent, Jaffna Emelda Sukumar said that by the end of the year the province would have total coverage of electricity and all main cities would have pipe borne water. “Pipe borne water in Jaffna would be utilized for industries,’ she said. She also assured that a carpeted road network to Jaffna from Vavuniya would be completed in two years.
The President of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka (FCCISL) Kumar Mallimaratchi said that JITF helped inhabitants and traders of Jaffna to make technological exchanges and be in line with the vast advances that have taken place in technology. ‘This will help the traders in their endeavour to create more efficient and sustainable businesses,” he said.
Recently, the Northern Province recorded a provincial nominal GDP growth rate of 14.2 per cent, the second highest in Sri Lanka and Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal earlier this month predicted that the North and East wereexpected to grow at 13 percent during the next four years.
The trade fair organized by Sri Lanka’s award winning event organizing company, Lanka Exhibition and Conference Services (LECS) attracted over 200 companies both local and international, exhibiting over 300 stalls. Over 60,000 visitors participated.
Image: Minister of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprise Development Douglas Devananda, Consul General of India in Jaffna, V. Mahalingam, the President, FCCISL, Kumar Mallimaratchi, Director of LECS Imran Hassan opening the JITF.
Related Info :
• Palaly to be Made an International Airport for Regional Passengers to Sri Lanka. Rs 1bn Allocated for Northern Development
• Jaffna International Trade Fair 2012 from 20 to 22 January at Alfred Durayappah Stadium. Over 200 Companies to Take Part in JITF