Embassy of Sri Lanka in Brussels promoted exports of Fair Trade and organic products from Sri Lanka during the Fair Trade Week in Belgium last week.
The event was organised by the Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO), Fair Trade Belgium, Belgium Fair Trade Federation (BFTF) and the Trade Development Center (TDC).
The event provided an opportunity for the Sri Lankan companies to interact with potential buyers of Fair Trade and organic products since the Embassy conducted an interactive promotional event between the importers in Belgium and a small group of exporters from Sri Lanka.
Addressing the event, Sri Lanka’s envoy to Belgium Grace Asirwatham said that “Fair Trade industry in Sri Lanka is being further developed with a view to export diversified Fair Trade products to the world market” She urged the Belgian buyers to experience the high quality products from Sri Lanka under the GSP Plus preferential system.
The Embassy also participated in several programmes organised by the Fair Trade Advocacy Office during the Fair Trade Week in Belgium, such as the annual Fair Trade breakfast meeting at the European Parliament in which 150 invitees including members of the European Parliament (MEPs) and stakeholders of the Fair Trade and organic industry gathered for promotion of Fair Trade within the European Union.
The breakfast session was hosted by Bernd Lange, the Chair of EU International Trade Committee and Member of European Parliament (MEP).
Furthermore, Lange noted that “European Union trade policy should contribute to the advancement of sustainable development goals worldwide and in that terms, the Fair Trade was an interesting tool to achieve those goals”.
Ambassador Asirwatham was further given an opportunity to share her views on developing Fair Trade industry in Sri Lanka to increase exports of Fair Trade products to the European region.
The Embassy of Sri Lanka together with the relevant institutions in Sri Lanka was able to initiate action to seek cooperation to develop Fair Trade industry in Sri Lanka through a bilateral arrangement between Sri Lanka and Fair Trade Advocacy and other Fair Trade networks in Belgium, which is expected to be finalised in the near future.