The Europan Union (EU) has urged Sri Lanka to notify import restrictions measures imposed since April 2020 to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), while stressing the need for a level playing field to engage in open and fair trade.
The European Union (EU) and the government of Sri Lanka held their 23rd meeting of the Joint Commission on 25 January 2021, via video conference. This was the first Joint Commission under the new leadership in both the European Union and Sri Lanka.
“The Joint Commission acknowledged that there was potential for Sri Lanka to make even better use of the tariff concessions granted. In this regard, among other things, the EU also stressed that open and fair trade requires a level playing field, and expressed its strong concerns about Sri Lanka’s import restrictions imposed since April 2020, following COVID, which have a negative impact on European businesses. The EU urged Sri Lanka to notify these measures to the World Trade Organisation,” a media release issued by Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka has reaffirmed the commitments made to effectively implement the 27 international Conventions covered by the GSP+ scheme on human and labour rights, environment and good governance.
In this context, the EU reiterated the need for Sri Lanka to amend the Prevention of Terrorism Act and bring it in line with international standards.
The Sri Lankan government confirmed its intent on revisiting the provisions of the PTA with a view to making the appropriate amendments.
The EU and Sri Lanka agreed on a series of actions for follow-up before the next Joint Commission meeting in Brussels in 2021.