For the 1st time in the recent history of Sri Lanka top four Chairman of the public sector driving brand Sri Lanka in the global arena met in unison to power the country at World Expo 2015- which is termed globally as the most visited and watched event next to the Olympics.
The overall objective set by the team was to identify sector wise a monthly focus and then to send a powerful message to the world so that it supports the overall proposition of the brand Sri Lanka which is currently valued at 61 billion dollars and targeting a 80 billion dollars within the next two years.
The cross functional 10 core committee consist of Department of commerce, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions Bureau, Sri Lanka export development board, The National Gem and Jewelry Association, Sri Lanka Tea Board, The Craft Council of Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Airlines. The chairman supported the core committee at a strategic level which gave direction to the team who in turn was guided by the relevant minister of the ministries. The focal ministers being the Ministry of Trade and Commerce Hon Minister RishadBathiudeen and Ministry of a Tourism and Sports Hon. Minister NavinDissanayake.
Tea Board Chairman Y.G Wijeratne, EDB Chairman Bandula Egodage, Craft Council Chairman Buddi Keerthisena, Sri Lanka Tourism Chairman Rohanth Athukorala with the Director of BOI Dilip Samarasinghe, The Director Marketing National Gem and Jewelry Association Rohan Perera.
The 12 core team members who have put together the project are Ms. JeevaniSiriwardena, Addl. Director General EDB, Mr. Dammika Jayawardena, Director (Special Projects), EDB, Mr. Dilip Samarasinghe Director (Media & Publicity), BOI, Ms. Chandramali Liyanage, Director (Actg.), National Craft Council, Mr. Somasena Mahadiulwewa, Deputy Director of Commerce, Ministry of Industry and Commece, Ms. Priyanka Liyanage, Senior Executive, Sri Lanka Tea Board, Ms PremilaSrikanth the Director Marketing Sri Lanka Tea Board, Mr. Jeevana Fernando, Assistant Director, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, Ms. Manohari Hewage, Assistant Director, National Craft Council and Ms. Shirani Herath the Market Head for Italy at the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau. The Secreatry of the committee Miss Chaturika from the Ministry of Commerce under the leadership of the Commissioner General Expo 2015 for Sri Lanka.
The key agreement achieved at the meeting yesterday was that we will operate the overall Expo 2015 pavilion on a Return on Investment(ROI) model said the Commissioner General of Expo 2015 for Sri Lanka Rohantha Athukorala given that the Prime a Minister had negotiated with the Italian government that the space was free but only the construction and design cost was to be borne by a respective country.
It was agree to dedicate the 1st month to Tourism and the overriding theme being " 8 wonderful experiences in 8 wonderful days". Right now the industry is working to cover the total investment of Expo 2015 within the firsts month of the launch which will take place on the 1st of a May 2015 under the distinguish presence of the Minister Hon. NavinDissanayaka said the Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotions bureau.
From month two onwards the focus will over to the other key treasures of Sri Lanka like The Ceylon Tea proposition in the month of June will be on the theme “World finest ethically produced tea”. In the Month of July it will be Ceylon Sapphire on the theme “Sapphire capital of the World”, in the month of August the focus will be on Ceylon Cinnamon on the thee " Pure Ceylon Cinnamon” proposition whilst the month of September will be dedicated to Sri Lanka Exports –on the Theme “Ethical sourcing capital to the World” and finally in the month October the popular Sri Lanka Handicrafts on the throne “Tradition, Culture and sustainability”. The BOI and the Sri Lankan Airlines will cut across all months as it will be a generic product that must be available right across the 6 month exposition was the agreement of the team which was the cohesive working environment of had team said a spokesperson to Expo 2015.
The stall allocated per sector wise will show case a private sector company for 2 weeks and then it will be rotated so that by the end of the programme we will give a minimum top hundred private sector companies to be given a chance to reach the twenty million people that will cone for the exhibition. Already 7 million tickets have been sold out of which 3 million are t china which tells us the new market opportunity said the Commissioner General of Expo 2015 who is targeting to beat the 200,000 visitor target from china into Sri Lanka.