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Sri Lanka's largest trade exhibition with Chinese participants attract 1 bln USD investment

COLOMBO, Nov. 21 (Xinhua)-- Sri Lanka has attracted investment of 1 billion U.S dollars from the largest ever trade exhibition held on the sidelines of the Commonwealth leaders summit that also included 42 Chinese companies, a statement from the Industry Ministry here Thursday.

A 100-member Chinese delegation attended the Commonwealth Business Forum (CBF) while 42 representatives from Chinese companies participated in the trade exhibition on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) that ended Sunday.

The biggest Lankan trade, tourism and investment exposition in history successfully concluded, with 1 billion U.S. dollars in international business partnerships, a statement noted. "There were more than 242,000 visitors, which included an unprecedented number of international buyers representing 66 countries, leading to 1,428 serious buyer visits and 101 promising meetings,"said Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen said.

"Reflection of Sri Lanka" was inaugurated by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on the evening of Nov. 13 in the presence of a large number of Lankan and international dignitaries as well as media.

The strategic thinking behind "Reflection of Sri Lanka" was to leverage the opportunities provided by CHOGM as a platform to illustrate Sri Lanka's capacity to easily integrate with global value chains.

"Reflection" also highlighted the country's logistic capabilities, high knowledge base and its dedication to international compliance standards encasing trade, tourism and investment opportunities in them.

Of the 1,428 serious buyers visiting the event, 566 were trade delegates (including foreign visitors), 247 online registered buyers, 510 from business forum delegates and 105 new registrants.

As many as 195 negotiations for business partnerships took place, of which 37 led to confirmed, positive outcomes in no less than 11 sectoral categories, of which the leading categories were "diamond, gems and jewelry" and "soft toys and accessories."

The Chinese, Italian and South African delegations were afforded special factory visits upon their requests by "Reflection " organizers. Among the many factories visited were tea, construction, paint, rubber, cables, seafood and fruits and vegetable processing.

The Sri Lankan government has targeted attracting 2 billion U.S. dollars in investment through the Commonwealth Business Forum and trade exhibition.

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