WHITE 3D EMBOSSES CAPITAL LETTERS

Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC) to host business meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina Mission to Cover Major Textile Centers; Charlotte, Raleigh, Greensboro & Winston-Salem A Business Promotion Mission to North Carolina will be undertaken by the Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF) comprising representatives of leading Sri Lankan apparel exporters from 13th to 15th September, 2004, to promote business with US textile manufacturers. Mr. Mahesh Amalean, Chairman MAS Holdings Ltd. and Chairman, JAFF Sub-Committee on Human Resource Development/Technology Advanced Initiatives will lead the Business Promotion Mission. In Charlotte, North Carolina, they will be joined by Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the United States, Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe and Mr. Saman Udagedara, Minister (Commercial), Embassy of Sri Lanka in Washington D.C. The Mission was initiated by the Embassy of Sri Lanka and the Office of the USTR as a part of ongoing efforts to strengthen bilateral trade and investment relations between the two countries. The purpose of the Apparel Mission is to explore the possibility of expanding import of US manufactured fabrics, yarn, cotton, accessories etc., by Sri Lankan apparel manufactures, identify US fabric manufacturers, who may be interested in investing in fabric manufacturing facilities in the country to take advantage of the US one billion fabric import market in Sri Lanka, as well as, export market opportunities present elsewhere in the region. In 2003, the Sri Lanka apparel industry imported woven and knitted fabric, fiber, yarn and thread worth of US$ 1.3 billion from various sources. The US ranked as the sixth largest supplier of fabric to Sri Lanka after Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, China and India. However, imports from the US valued at US$ 47.0 million accounted for only 5% of the total fabric requirement in Sri Lanka. Hence sourcing of fabrics from the US could help in improving two way trade between the two countries. Rep. Sue Myrick (R-NC), a strong supporter of free trade, will host the delegation in Charlotte and will introduce them to leading US fabric manufacturers in Gaston County at a kick off meeting organized by the Gaston County Economic Development Commission. The event has been organized with the support of Rep. Sue Myrick and Chief Textile Negotiator David Spooner of the Office of the USTR. The meeting will be held at the North Carolina Centre for Applied Textile Technology (NCCATT). NCCATT is the leading school in North Carolina dedicated to teaching textile technology. President of the NCCATT Dr. James Lemons and Mr. Steven Dobbins, Chairman of the National Council of Textile Organizations and Mr. Gregg Sizemore of US Department of Commerce will also participate at this meeting. Major textile companies in Gaston County including Wellman Industries, Carolina Mills, Contrad Phyne, Pharr Yarns and Radicispandex will be displaying their products at the NCCATT and representatives of these companies will be meeting the visiting Mission to discuss possible business opportunities and to forge business partnerships. The Business Promotion Mission will also visit Parkdale Mills Inc., R.L. Stove Mills and American & Efird Mills in Gaston County. The Business Promotion Mission will travel to Raleigh, Greensboro and Winston-Sale, the major textile centers in North Carolina, to meet with US fabric manufacturers. The meeting in Raleigh will be held at the North Carolina State University College of Textiles. In Greensboro the delegation will meet leading US fabric manufacturers such as Burlington Industry, Conemills, Elastic Fabric Manufacturers etc. The Business Promotion Mission will also visit Sara-Lee Branded Apparel, which has established a state-of-the-art Design Centre in Sri Lanka and is also scheduled to meet with fabric manufacturers and representatives of Textile Associations in the area. Other members of the JAAF mission include; Mr. Janak Hirdaramani, Director, Hirdaramani Group, Mr. Feroz Omar, Managing Director, Kuruwita Industries Ltd., Mr. Channa Palansuriya, Managing Director, Orit Apparels Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd. and Mr. Anupam Agrawal, General Manager, Ishin Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd. Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC USA 09 September 2004

Minister discusses with major US power and energy players Sri Lanka’s need to diversify its power generation system

Hon. Susil Premajayantha, Minister of Power and Energy of Sri Lanka concluded a one day visit to the US receiving a positive response from the US Trade and Development Agency and the World Bank for assistance in diversifying and upgrading the power and energy sector in Sri Lanka. Minister Discusses Trade and Development Agency Financing At a meeting with the Country Manager/Asia of the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), the Minister reviewed USTDA technical assistance for consultancy services on the development of a 300 MW coal fired power plant within the agreement signed in July 2003 between the US and Sri Lanka for the award of US$560,000 in terms of technical assistance for the above project. Minister Premajayantha informed USTDA that Sri Lanka, having maximized its hydro power potential, is now seriously considering developing coal and thermal power plants to meet the country’s special needs in the power and energy sector. The Minister also informed the need to engage in off -shore oil and gas explorations to increase Sri Lanka’s capacity to manage the effect of fluctuations in the global oil prices. Country Manager /Asia, pointing out that power and energy sector development being part of USTDA mission objectives, expressed a willingness to consider favourably Sri Lanka’s request for expert services in this sector. Discussions at the World Bank Minister Premajayantha met with Mr. Praful Patel, Vice President, South Asia Region to inform Sri Lanka’s priorities in the power and energy sector and to discuss potential World Bank assistance for meeting these priorities. Highlighting the anticipated power shortages, given Sri Lanka’s predominant reliance on hydro-electricity and the rising cost of relying excessively on thermal power that threaten to impede economic growth, the Minister expressed the need for diversifying Sri Lanka’s energy generation system to meet the consumer and industry needs and, to mitigate the negative impact of global hikes in oil prices. In this context, Minister Premajayantha informed Sri Lanka’s need for technical assistance to support off –shore oil and gas explorations. Vice President Patel informed the Minister that the World Bank is willing and flexible in meeting Sri Lanka’s special needs as outlined by the Minister. Minister Discusses Investment Opportunities with Major US Players in Power and Energy Sector Meeting with Senior Executives of Caterpillar Power Ventures Corporation, the Minister reviewed progress made on the company’s investment in a US$ 60 million joint venture power generation project in Sri Lanka with the Aitken Spence Company. The construction of a 100 MW power plant at Embilipitiya by the Joint Venture Company ACE Power Embilipitiya Pvt. Ltd., which is already underway, will be commissioned in April 2005 and commercial operations are expected to commence in May 2005. Minister Premajayantha also discussed investment opportunities in the alternative energy area and in coal and thermal power plants in Sri Lanka. Caterpillar Power Ventures Corporation is a member of the Sri Lanka Working Group established at the United States Chamber of Commerce and extends valuable support to promoting Sri Lanka’s trade and investment agenda in the US. The Corporation also supported humanitarian de-mining activities in the North by sponsoring one of the specially trained de-mining dogs in the canine de-miming program recently launched in Sri Lanka. Discussing the status of the Kelanitissa Pvt. Ltd. (AESK) owned by AES Corporation USA, the Minister discussed new opportunities emerging in the alternative and renewable energy sector in Sri Lanka. Both, Caterpillar Power Ventures Corporation and AES Corporation USA informed Minister Premajayantha that they are fully satisfied with their investments in Sri Lanka and found the investment climate and the capacity of local banks and companies in Sri Lanka attractive to forge future business partnerships. Discussions with Senior Officials of US Energy Association (USEA) At the meeting with Senior Officials of the USEA, the Minister discussed ways of establishing a partnership with the USEA to share its experiences in the areas of power transmission and distribution, energy sector regulation, energy efficiency and utility management under its Energy Partnership Program and its affiliation with the South Asia Regional Initiative for Energy Cooperation and Development (SARI/Energy). Minister Premajayantha also informed the special emphasis given to rural electrification programs under rural sector development envisaged in Sri Lanka’s Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) Compact and discussed potential programs under the USEA and USAID. USEA, a member of the World Energy Council, is a non-profit association of over 165 public and private energy related organizations, corporations and government agencies and, is funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID). Minister Premajayantha’s discussions with the USTDA, the World Bank, USEA and the two major US players in the power and energy sector and, their positive response to Sri Lanka’s needs, seek to broaden and deepen the growing US-Sri Lanka partnership in the power and energy sector. Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC USA 13 August 2004

Minister Premajayantha to discuss with the US Government, power companies and the World Bank power and energy sector development

Minister of Power and Energy of Sri Lanka, Hon. Susil Premajayantha, will visit Washington D.C. from August 12-13, 2004. While in Washington DC, the Minister of Power and Energy will meet with Senior Officials of the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) to discuss areas of financing in the power and energy sector under the USTDA technical assistance program. The Minister will also meet with Senior Executives of major US energy companies to discuss investment opportunities in the energy sector in Sri Lanka. The Minister’s discussions with USTDA officials will be within the framework of the agreement signed (July 2003) between the US and Sri Lanka for the award of US$ 560, 000 to fund technical assistance program for providing consultancy services on the development of a 300MW coal fired power plant. Among the US companies who have invested in Sri Lanka and have ongoing power projects are, Caterpillar Power Ventures Corporation and AES Corporation, USA. Caterpillar Power Ventures Corporation has invested in a US$ 60 million joint venture power generation project in Sri Lanka with Aitken Spence Company. The Joint Venture Company ACE Power Embilipitiya Pvt. Ltd. has started construction of a 100 MW power plant at Embilipitiya. AES Corporation, USA owns the Kelanitissa Pvt. Ltd. (AESK), a 163 MW diesel fired combined cycle power facility near Colombo. Minister Premajayantha will also meet with Senior Officials of the US Energy Association (USEA) to discuss ways of enhancing a partnership with Sri Lanka on issues related to power regulation, transmission and utilities. In a meeting with Vice President, South Asia Region of the World Bank, the Minister will discuss issues related to the power sector in Sri Lanka. The visit of Minister Premajayantha is part of an ongoing process of high level consultations on Sri Lanka’s efforts to diversify its power generation system. Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC USA 12 August 2004
Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the United States, addressed the participants of the National Student Leadership Conference (NSLC) at the International Diplomacy Conference organized by the National Student Leadership Foundation. The Diplomacy Conference was held at the American University in Washington DC on August 11, 2004. The National Student Leadership Conference sponsored by the National Student Leadership Foundation is a forum that brings together student leaders from around the US and abroad, to explore issues in international relations, diplomacy, terrorism, political influence, and the changing world economy. Approximately 300 students had registered to participate in the August 2004 program. The International Diplomacy Program also enables students to gain leadership skills through an exploration of current security issues facing the global community and a simulation of the United Nations System. Past speakers at this forum have included Secretary of State Madeline Albright, Attorney General Janet Reno, Supreme Court Justices, as well as President of the World Bank James Wolfensohn and former Justice of the ICJ Stephen Schwebel. Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe’s address entitled, “Promoting Foreign Policy Goals of Sri Lanka” was a comprehensive and substantive briefing that included a historical profile of the country and US-Sri Lanka relations, as well as, an account of Sri Lanka’s interests in the US. Commenting on his role as Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the United States, Ambassador Subasinghe discussed in detail the efforts involved in the realization of the four objectives on which Sri Lanka’s interests in the US are predicated upon. These objectives include, deepening and broadening the US-Sri Lanka bilateral partnership in its economic, political, cultural and diplomatic dimensions, securing greater trade and capital market access for Sri Lanka in the US and securing higher levels of US investment in the country, increasing Sri Lanka’s access to the IMF, the World Bank and US Government for development assistance and fourthly, providing quality Consular Services and outreach activities to the expatriate community and the US public. Providing useful insights into each of the four foreign policy objectives, Ambassador Subasinghe highlighted that a small country such as Sri Lanka has been successful in accessing the highest levels of the US political leadership both within the Executive and the Legislative branches. The US Government has invested significant political, financial and economic resources in the bilateral relationship in a very difficult and challenging global context where Afghanistan, Iraq and Sudan among others, compete for US attention and resources. Responding to a question on Sri Lanka’s strategy following quotas being dismantled under the WTO Agreement on Textile and Clothing, Ambassador Subasinghe mentioned that Sri Lanka Government would need to support the local apparel sector to make it more competitive by making available good infrastructure, and ensuring lower business costs. Ambassador Subasinghe’s address received a standing ovation from the 300 student participants and the faculty members present and, was followed by an extensive Question and Answer session. The Ambassador responded to a series of questions from the participants pertaining to recruitment of child soldiers and local and international efforts to combat the problem, Sri Lanka’s role in the SAARC forum, micro-loan programs in the country, issues related to child labour, prospects for peace, status of women in Sri Lankan society, and the Bush administration’s support for relations with countries in South Asia. Encouraging the participants of the NSLC to avail themselves fully of the opportunity provided for visiting Sri Lanka under the US Study Abroad Programs such as the Intercollegiate Sri Lanka Education (ISLE) Program and the post-graduate programs sponsored by the American Institute for Sri Lankan Studies (AISLS), Ambassador Subasinghe said, “ As prospective future leaders, the experiences and insights gained through this program will not only broaden your understanding of Sri Lanka but will also broaden your perspectives on the various dynamics that govern life in South Asia. Such informed understanding is critical to fostering harmony among countries in the world.” Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC USA 11 August 2004
Colombo Port is the first in South Asia to partner in the War on Terrorism through the “MegaPorts Initiative” Minister discusses port and airport security cooperation and technology with key US officials US grant financing to assist Sri Lanka in port and aviation development Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Ports & Aviation exchanging the MoU with US Energy Secretary Hon. Spencer Abraham at the signing ceremony. Also in the picture (extreme L) are Mr. Ariyaratne Hewage, Secretary to the Ministry of Ports & Aviation and Chairman Airport & Aviation (Sri Lanka) Ltd, Mr. M.K.A.M. Hizbullah. Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Ports and Aviation of Sri Lanka concluded a four -day visit to the US enhancing the growing US - Sri Lanka partnership in port and aviation security. The visit highlight was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concerning Cooperation to Prevent the Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear and Other Radioactive Material on July 21, 2004 at the Department of Energy, Washington DC, between the US Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham and the Minister of Ports and Aviation Mangala Smaraweera. The Hon. Minister’s discussions with senior officials of the US Department of Energy, US Department of Homeland Security, US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) were part of the ongoing partnership with the US on national security and trade facilitation matters. Officials accompanying the Minister also met with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on flight and airport safety matters. These meetings specifically helped consolidate objectives envisaged for Sri Lanka in the areas pertaining to airport development and civil aviation projects, sea port development and port security initiatives. Signing of MoU under the “MegaPorts Initiative” Enhances Colombo Port Security Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Ports and Aviation of Sri Lanka and Hon. Abraham Spencer, United States Energy Secretary signed the MOU concerning Cooperation to Prevent the Illicit Trafficking in Nuclear and Other Radioactive Material on behalf of their respective Governments. Sri Lanka will be the first country in South Asia to utilize the type of new radiation detection system to be installed under the “MegaPorts Initiative.” US –Sri Lanka cooperation under this MoU will enhance security at the Colombo Port which is one of South Asia's largest seaports, handling more than 19 million containers annually. Thousands of commercial ships traveling between Asia, Europe, Africa, the Americas and the Middle East pass through Colombo Port’s container facilities. The MegaPorts Initiative supports and complements the Container Security Initiative (CSI) of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection under the US Department of Homeland Security and, Sri Lanka is a partner of the US on the CSI as well. The MegaPorts Initiative, is making technical resources available to complement the Customs Bureau’s Container Security Initiative at international ports. Following the signing, the Hon. Samaraweera said, “we have been able to sign this MOU within a remarkably short period of time, which amply demonstrates Sri Lanka’s commitment to cooperate with the international community in the war against terrorism and to prevent illicit arms and material trafficking. I trust that Sri Lanka is the first country in South Asia, if not in Asia, to participate in the MegaPorts Initiative. Sri Lanka appreciates this opportunity to have a close partnership with the US in this important operation in the fight against terrorism and protect the Port of Colombo.” Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham said, “the illicit trafficking of material and components for nuclear weapons through the global maritime network is a serious threat that must be addressed. Installing sophisticated radiation detection devices in Sri Lanka, and at other key shipping centers around the world, is a major step forward in preventing the trafficking of dangerous nuclear and radiological materials. This is a very important initiative that Sri Lanka was able to sign and Sri Lanka’s ready cooperation in this regard will set an example to other nations.” Prior to the signing of the MoU, the Minister met with Deputy Secretary of Energy Kyle McSlarrow who expressed his appreciation for the Minister’s leadership in this initiative on the basis of shared objectives with regard to the war on terrorism and ensuring security of the global trading system. A Department of Energy team will be visiting Sri Lanka on June 23rd, 2004 on a port familiarization visit and to meet with senior officials of the Colombo Port and the Sri Lanka Navy on the implementation of the MegaPorts Initiative. International Summit on Aviation Safety and Security Minister Samaraweera and his delegation comprising, Mr. A. Hewage Secretary, Ministry of Ports and Aviation, Mr. M.K.A.M. Hizbullah, Chairman, Airport and Aviation (Sri Lanka) Ltd and Mr. H.M.C. Nimalasiri, Director-General, Civil Aviation Authority attended the International Summit on Aviation Safety and Security in Washington DC and discussed ways and means of increasing cooperation on international aviation safety and security and in ensuring continuing compliance with ICAO Standards in those areas. The Sri Lanka delegation met with counterparts of the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) during the Summit to discuss issues related to ICAO safety and security compliance and aviation security programs. The Ministerial level discussions with participating countries centered on economic benefits of tourism in the context of safe and secure air transport, regional challenges in aviation safety and security and the essential elements of civil aviation safety and security from a policy perspective. Minister Conducts Technical Discussions at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) on Port and Airport Security Hon. Mangala Samaraweera meets Rear Admiral (Ret.) David M. Stone, Actg. Administrator of US Transportation Security Administration Minister Samaraweera also conducted technical discussions at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Following the 9/11 attacks, the TSA was established in November, 2001 by President George W. Bush under the Department of Homeland Security in order to protect the US ground, air and ports transportation systems to ensure freedom of movement for people and commerce. Acting Administrator of TSA Rear Admiral (Ret) David M. Stone welcomed the delegation and gave an overview of the tasks and responsibilities of the organization. The main objective of the TSA’s efforts was to strike a balance between the flow of trade and security. Admiral Stone commented on the excellent relations existing between the US Customs and the Sri Lankan counterparts and the burgeoning relationship with the US Coast Guard. Mentioning that he was extremely happy to assist Sri Lanka to ensure security and protection to its airports and harbours, Admiral Stone said, “we look for leadership, partnership and friendship with Sri lanka.” Minister Samaraweera discussed air cargo security screening aspects of airport security in the light of Sri Lankan carriers transporting both passengers and cargo and, given Sri Lanka’s past experiences, to seek ways to raise the bar on airport security without affecting the country’s tourism industry. In response, Rear Admiral (Ret) Stone briefed the Minister on recent aviation security measures adopted by the US to mitigate terrorist threats without affecting passenger travel. Hon. Mangala Samaraweera (C) with Actg. Administrator Devid M. Stone (R), Ambassador Devinda R. Subasinghe (extreme L), Ports and Aviation Secretary Mr. A. Hewage (extreme R) and Chairman Airport & Aviation (Sri Lanka) Ltd, Mr. M.K.A.M. Hizbullah (L) The Container Security Division of the Customs and Border Protection agency briefed the delegation on the implementation of the Container Security Initiative (CSI) which is already operational in 19 of the world’s major sea ports in Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. He stated that in the immediate future, action would be initiated to install Non Intrusive Inspection (NII) equipment at the Colombo Harbour. The Department of State conducted a technical briefing on airport security matters and available technologies. Minister Discusses Trade and Development Agency Financing At the meeting with Ms. Thelma J. Askey, Director of the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) the Minister reviewed the ongoing USTDA grant assistance program in Sri Lanka and identified possible areas of future cooperation. Director Askey informed that the USTDA has been conducting useful on-going programmes in Sri Lanka, including a Need Assessment Study for the Implementation of Container Security Initiative, Technical Assistance for a Coal Fired Power Project, and facilitating a Study Tour by Aviation Officials from Sri Lanka, among others. Minister Samaraweera highlighted that in the area of civil aviation, the Government wishes to seek USTDA assistance to upgrade the existing airports namely, the Ratmalana, Weerawila and Koggala airports, to enhance airport security, to develop private helicopter services for tourism, assistance to evaluate second runway project proposals, including development of the Hambantota Harbour. Director Askey pointing out that airport development and security is very much a part of the USTDA mission objectives, expressed a willingness to consider Sri Lanka Government’s expressed areas of development favourably. She also informed that a Definition Mission to identify financing opportunities related to civil aviation for USTDA will be visiting Sri Lanka from 9th August 2004. Representatives of Airline Capital Associates Inc., the consultancy company selected for the purpose, also were present at the discussions. It was agreed that USTDA would fund a study tour for a Sri Lankan delegation from the civil aviation sector to study airport security and air navigation systems. Discussions with Senior Executives of Lockheed -Martin, Boeing & Bechtel-Alterra Partners USTDA had also arranged for representatives of leading US civil aviation and aviation security companies, Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Bechtel-Alterra Partners to brief the Hon. Minister on the capabilities of the US companies, latest technology available in the area of air port security, air traffic control, navigation systems and public –private partnerships. Briefing at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) In his capacity as the Minister of Information and Media, Minister Samaraweera met with the FCC for a briefing on the FCC’s regulatory framework governing communications by radio, television, wire, satellite and cable. A special focus of the briefing was on the regulatory policy pertaining to the issuance of licenses, allocation of frequencies for broadcast media, content regulation and, the regulatory policy in place for ownership thresholds for broadcasters. In the discussions that followed the briefing, the Minister informed that Sri Lanka had worked with the FCC previously to formulate the country’s communications regulatory mechanism, the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission. The Minister also discussed ways of availing of FCC expertise and experience in upgrading and revising the existing regulatory policy framework for broadcast media in Sri Lanka, as part of future bilateral collaboration with the FCC. Visit to the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) At a meeting with the Senior Vice President for International Relations at the NAB, a full service trade association representing the interests of free, over-the-air radio and television broadcasters, the Minister had discussions on the mission and mandate of the NAB and explored the possibility of encouraging Sri Lanka broadcasting media to collaborate with the NAB on its research capabilities in the area of commercial and community broadcasting. Discussions at the World Bank At the invitation of the World Bank, Minister Samaraweera met with Mr. Praful Patel, Vice President, South Asia Region to discuss potential World Bank support for port and aviation development. Visit to the Washington Buddhist Vihara The Minister visited the Washington Buddhist Vihara and received blessings from the Ven. Maharagama Dhammasiri Thero, Chief Priest of the Washington Buddhist Vihara. Minister Samarawera also visited the International Buddhist Center in Wheaton and received blessings from the Ven. Katugastota Uparathana Maha Thero, Chief incumbent of the Wheaton Vihara. The Minister’s official delegation comprised Mr. A. Hewage Secretary, Ministry of Ports and Aviation, Mr. M.K.A.M. Hizbullah, Chairman, Airport and Aviation (Sri Lanka) Ltd and Mr. H.M.C. Nimalasiri, Director-General, Civil Aviation Authority. Embassy of Sri Lanka Washington DC USA 23 July 2004

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