Conference: ‘Ten Years of the India-Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement: Achievements, Challenges & the Road Ahead’

The Conference titled ‘Ten Years of the Indo-Lanka Free Trade Agreement(ILFTA)’ was organized by IPS, the Centre for WTO Studies – Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, the India-Sri Lanka Joint Business Council, and the Indo-Lanka Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and took place on the 24th and 25th of May. The objective of this conference was to review the performance of the ILFTA, assess the benefits that have resulted, and also examine the pitfalls in the agreement where improvement is needed. Expert reviews and informed evaluations of this nature are necessary in order to improve upon existing trade policy measures such as the ILFTA to ensure that they fulfil their role in contributing to national development objectives.

There was strong stakeholder participation throughout the conference including representation from key private sector chambers such as the Ceylon National Chamber of Industries, National Chamber of Exporters, Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Sri Lanka, the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce and the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka. Major government departments such as the Department of Commerce, Ministry of Trade, Board of Investment, Export Development Board and the Ministry of Industrial Development were represented in the conference as well. The conference was also open to the general public upon prior registration and several members of the private sector, academia and civil society participated at the conference in this capacity.

Presentations:

     Looking Back – Rationale for ILFTA:Objectives & Expectations
Saman Kelegama, Executive Director, IPS

     Ten Years of the India-Sri Lanka Free Trade Agreement: Achievements, Challenges & the Road Ahead
Indra Nath Mukherji, Senior Consultant, Research and Information System for Developing Countries, New Delhi

Outcomes of Ten Years of the ILFTA: Sri Lankan Perspectives
Deshal de Mel, Research Economist, IPS

Ten Years of India-Sri lanka FTA:Outcome and Indian Perspectives
Rajan Sudesh Ratna, Professor, Centre for WTO Studies, New Delhi

Ten Years of the India Lanka Trade Agreement 
Saon Ray, Senior Fellow, Indian Council for Research on International Economic Research (ICRIER), New Delhi

Addressing Stakeholder Concerns: Implications For Negotiatiors
Rajan Sudesh Ratna, Professor, Centre for WTO Studies, New Delhi