Message from Ambassador
The United States and Sri Lanka are old friends and have enjoyed a strong economic partnership that spans over 100 years. The United States quickly recognized Sri Lanka when it became independent and has given the country over $2 billion dollars in aid over the years. We believe that creating economic opportunities in the post-conflict north and east will go hand in hand with political reconciliation as a unifying force.
The United States is also good friends with Maldives, where we work together on environmental and many other issues. The United States has provided significant aid for tsunami projects and for climate change adaptation.
We are also working hard to fulfill President Obama’s National Export Initiative, which seeks to double U.S. exports.
Post’s three-pronged strategy focuses on market access, outreach to encourage U.S. exports, and commercial advocacy. We are pleased that U.S. exports to Sri Lanka increased by over 70% in 2011. While this is a significant improvement, we will keep striving to improve these numbers as the U.S. still has a large trade deficit with Sri Lanka. U.S. exports to Maldives were up 58% in 2011, a great step forward.
As a Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) Partnership Post, we coordinate with FCS in Chennai, India. We also support our USDA Foreign Agricultural Service and U.S. Patent and Trademark Office colleagues serving in New Delhi. Embassy sections and agencies, including the Front Office, Public Affairs, the Defense Attaché, and USAID assist the Economic and Commercial section to further export promotion. We see opportunities in many areas, ranging from tourism, infrastructure development, information technologies, and a growing consumer market.