This chapter includes the following articles.
Trade and investment activities in Sri Lanka benefit from the country’s location along busy Indian Ocean trade routes, abundant agricultural and industrial exports, and a young, skilled workforce. Just 19 km separate its southern-most port from a global shipping lane carrying two-thirds of the world’s oil and half of its container shipments. This makes local ports a natural staging post for cargo destined for India and Pakistan, with some 30% of the former’s container traffic currently trans-shipped through Sri Lanka. The country has also been making strides in attracting international stakeholders to develop trade, transport and logistics infrastructure, becoming a major destination for foreign direct investment (FDI) in the process. Higher inflows have benefitted the broader economy; 2018 was the highest year on record for FDI, with $2.3bn worth of investments made. This chapter contains interviews with Parag Khanna, Founder and Managing Partner, FutureMap; Champika Malalgoda, Director-General, Board of Investments; and Thilan Wijesinghe, Chairman, National Agency for Public-Private Partnership.