Government to support Confectionery Industry to become a global player.
By: Staff Writer
January 26, Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka confectionery industry has been directed to expand their horizons and tap into international markets while developing coca plantations
President Ranil Wickremesinghe, issued this directive while addressing the 30th Annual General Meeting of the Lanka Confectionary Manufacturers Association (LCMA) yesterday (24) at Cinnamon Grand Hotel, Colombo,
He emphasized the potential for Sri Lanka to become a global player in the confectionery industry. He encouraged Sri Lankan confectioners to expand their horizons and tap into international markets.
The President disclosed the significance of positioning Sri Lankan chocolates as a world-class product, similar to the renowned reputation of the country’s tea and cinnamon.
His encouragement aimed to inspire the confectionery industry to embark on a journey towards global recognition and market presence.
He expressed optimism about the potential for Sri Lankan chocolates to become globally recognized. The President urged the confectioners to explore new markets and export their products.
He further noted the limitations for expansion within the country and suggested looking beyond borders, citing the success of the Kandos factory in Petaling Jaya, Malaysia in 1978.
He advocated for increased exports and identified the confectionery industry, particularly chocolates, as having the potential for international recognition.
President Wickremesinghe encouraged the confectionery industry to explore intercropping with developing citing state plantations in Matale, Kandy, Mawathagama, and Dodangaslanda for potential expansion. He mentioned plans to collaborate with smallholders and discussions with the governments of Ghana and Ivory Coast for access to cocoa.
The President outlined broader initiatives, including leasing state-owned plantations to Sri Lankan companies or Sri Lankan companies with foreign shareholders for the development of the food industry, encompassing confectionery.
Virtually all the lands owned by Chilaw and Kurunegala plantation plus Elkaduwa with JEDB and SPC. He disclosed plans for modernizing agriculture, enhancing competitiveness through the National Productivity Commission and upgrading trade agreements with India and Thailand.
President Wickremesinghe pledged government support, including Rs. 8 billion for research and development, to foster a thriving confectionery industry urging collaboration, innovation and expansion into various areas of the food industry positioning it as a “low hanging fruit” for economic growth.