• Thu. Sep 22nd, 2022

Sri Lanka – Canada Business Council holds 31st Annual General Meeting

The 31 st Annual General Meeting of the Sri Lanka – Canada Business Council (SLCBC) of the Ceylon
Chamber of Commerce was held recently. Daniel Bood, Counsellor for Political & Trade at the
The High Commission of Canada graced the occasion as the Chief Guest Priyantha Padmasiri
Chandrasekara, Chairman of Thames International Educational Consultancy (Pvt) Ltd was elected as
the President of the Council for the year 2022-2023.


Chandrasekara addressing the gathering stated that “It has been challenging to establish
bilateral commercial partnerships with Canada over the past year because of the Covid 19
outbreak and the ongoing political turmoil in Sri Lanka. To increase the number of members
engaged in business between Canada and Sri Lanka, the Committee Members will arrange more
events, primarily in the development of membership, with the aid of trade fairs, business
seminars, webinars, and bilateral trade investments with Canada.”

Chandrasekara assured the members that the Sri Lanka – Canada Business Council under his
leadership will continue with the new plan of action to further enhance tourism, education, travel
& ticketing, IT consulting, travel and insurance as well as export/import businesses between Sri
Lanka and Canada. In his closing remarks, MChandrasekara expressed his sincere thanks to Daniel Bood, Counsellor for Political & Trade at the High Commission of Canada for gracing the occasion.

Bood, began his remarks by congratulating the SLCBC on its 31 st year of operations,
referring to some of his observations since his arrival in the country in July 2021, a time when the
country was yet battling COVID-19 and the government was undertaking an aggressive vaccination
campaign. He noted that at that time, there were also increasing warning signs that Sri Lanka’s
growing economic malaise would soon explode into a full-blown economic crisis that had been long
in the making.

Bood relayed that Canada is considering to mobilize Canadian expertise to support badly hit
micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs), particularly those owned by women in Sri
Lanka’s North and East, to help improve their access to much-needed capital to weather the
economic crisis. Given that the economic crisis has also exacerbated cases of sexual and gender-
based violence, Canada will continue to help strengthen Sri Lanka’s women’s rights organizations
and women-led MSMEs, while addressing sexual gender based violence (SGBV) by supporting
survivors and the service providers that assist them.


At the same time, Bood indicated that the High Commission is pursuing collaboration
opportunities between Canadian and Sri Lankan institutions in the education field that he hopes will
bear fruit in the not too distant future. Bood said that he looked forward to working with the
SLCBC in the coming months to contribute to that transition from the perspective of bilateral trade
and investment.


Ong Jhon Seon, General Manager of Prima Ceylon (Pvt) Limited and Capt. Gayan Gunawardane,
Chief Operating Officer of Ceyline Shipping Pvt Ltd were elected as the Vice Presidents while
Rajendra Abeyasinghe, Chief Operating Officer of Hydromec International (Pvt) Ltd serves as the
Immediate Past President.


Jehan Perinpanayagam, Chief Executive Officer of Infomate (Pvt) Ltd, Mahesh
Kurukulasuriya, Group Chief Commercial Officer of McLarens Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, Mohomad
Hameez, Managing Director of Spillburg Holdings Pvt Ltd, Dhilan Mitchell, Chief Operating
Officer of Fairfirst Insurance Ltd and Dilanka Herath, Manager of United Ventures Pvt Ltd were
elected to serve on the Executive Committee of the Council for the period 2022-2023.

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