This was the first bilateral meeting that took place after the signing of the TIFA on 2 November 2017 in Colombo, during the visit of Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. The agenda included discussions on economic reforms and cooperation, free trade and regional trade agreements, market access and investment facilitation, and sectoral investment opportunities in both countries. Sri Lanka is the only country to have free trade agreements with India and Pakistan, which allow duty-free access to more than 1.3 billion of the island`s consumers. Since the signing of the agreement, bilateral trade between Sri Lanka and India has increased more than 5-fold and bilateral trade between Sri Lanka and Pakistan has tripled. In addition, a company can benefit from preferential trade access to two major regional blocs through its establishment in Sri Lanka under the South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) and the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA). Austrade strongly recommends that you witness this once again before selling in Sri Lanka. In addition to the above-mentioned key sectors, Australia has other sectors with trade and investment opportunities for Sri Lankan businessmen. You are sports management, sports medicine, arts and theaters and pastries. These discussions are expected to pave the way for regular consideration of bilateral trade and investment issues and other discussions between stakeholders in the two countries. Bilateral agreements between Sri Lanka and Australia provide that Australia`s bilateral trade and services relationship with Sri Lanka is estimated at UAD 973 million as of 2016. Australia`s trade and services exports to Sri Lanka are estimated at AUD 571 million as of 2016.
Australia is the 17th largest importing country for Sri Lanka. Kathy Klugman, First Assistant Secretary, South and West Asia Branch of DFAT, led the Australian delegation, which also joined officials from Austrade, the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources and the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation, as well as the Australian High Commission in Colombo. Australia`s preferential tariff regimes can be classified into four categories, depending on the size of trade flows: preferences for developing countries, special rates for certain countries, preferences for the Island Country Forum (CIF) and preferences mainly applicable to least developed countries (LDCs). Among Australia`s preferential measures, the tariff for developing countries is the broadest preference for the number of eligible economies. Sri Lanka is entitled to tariff preferences for certain exports of products to Australia under the tariff preferences granted to developing countries. For more information on the bilateral trade relationship between Australia and Sri Lanka, please visit the website of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The double taxation agreement signed between Sri Lanka and other countries aims to reduce tax rates on dividend interest and royalties. .