07/24/2013

www.gupta-verlag.de/rubber

SRI LANKA/VIETNAM: Lankan rubber firms to benefit in Vietnam

"SRI is an apex body in the sector envisaged in areas such as plantation technology development, training and skill development and joint research and development in rubber products manufacturing, prepared to facilitate such collaborative activities with Vietnam Rubber Association (VRA) that would result in expanded business relationships between the two countries,"Ellawala said.

He said that when a senior delegation from the VRA comprising of ten senior industry leaders was received by the Executive Board of the SRI. The Ministry of Plantation Industries, of Sri Lanka, has collaborated with SRI to draft a ten year Master Plan for rubber sector development which is aimed at increasing earnings from the present $1 billion to $3.5 billion by 2023, Ellawala said.

The Master Plan is being developed with Technical Assistance from the Asian Development Bank and Minister of Plantation Industries Mahinda Samarasinghe has supported them to obtain government approval for the Master Plan after validation by stakeholders, he said.

He said Vietnam has increased their area under rubber to 910,000 hectares and Sri Lankan manufacturing firms have an opportunity to venture into projects in Vietnam as a steady supply of natural rubber will be assured in future.

Cooperation is envisaged in areas such as plantation technology development, training and skills development and joint R & D in rubber products manufacturing, Ellawala said.

"Therefore SRI is prepared to facilitate such collaborative activities with VRA that will result in expanded business relationships between the two countries," he added.

He also said that on 10 June 2005, SRI signed a MoU with VRA in the presence of then Minister of Plantation Industries, Anura Priyadarshana Yapa who led a Sri Lankan rubber industry delegation on a study tour to Vietnam.

The MoU, which was signed in Ho Chi Minh City, aims at promoting collaboration between the two countries in rubber sector related matters for mutual benefit, he said. After a very cordial and fruitful discussion, the two associations agreed to pursue the aims of the MoU vigorously based on a long term program. Further discussions will be held in this regard. The VRA delegation showed much interest in the Sri Lanka Rubber Master Plan and expressed desire to collaborate closely with Sri Lankan counterparts who invited VRA members to consider investments in Sri Lanka not only in the rubber sector but also in other sectors that are expanding.

Head of Vietnam delegation Tran Ngoc Thuan agreed saying that his main priority is to activate the MoU between the two associations to create innovate products to the market.

He also said with the goals set in the Sri Lanka Rubber Master Plan and Sri Lankans success in development efforts could achieve its targets in the future. He agreed to develop a long-term collaborative program with the participation of SRI.

"The two associations will finalize such a program in the near future. VRA is the national rubber industry association in Vietnam, which is the fourth largest rubber producer in the world today, with an output of 860,000 metric tons," Thuan added.

Source: "Daily News", Colombo; 24 July 2013
(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)

www.gupta-verlag.de/rubber