To be a leading service provider in the Logistics Industry in Sri Lanka, while establishing a strong
presence in the regional freight forwarding arena.
Elite Shipping & Logistics is a Licensed Forwarder with:
Formerly known as Ceylon, Sri Lanka is an island nation of 20 million inhabitants, strategically located at the crossroads to the East & West. The city of Colombo remains the country’s commercial capital, whilst the administrative capital was moved to Sri Jayewardenepura, Kotte in 1982.
Sri Lanka has a proud history of over 2500 years with its original inhabitants crossing the Palk Strait from India, Ceylon was ruled for centuries by Sinhalese and Tamil kings. Beginning in 1505 Ceylon was colonized for over 400 years, first by the Portuguese then the Dutch and finally by the British. Sri Lanka was granted self-rule in 1948 by the British and went on to adopt a democratic style of government based on the Westminster system.
In the latter stages of 1970’s the country welcomed economic liberalization and to date remains to be a prominent open market economy in the South Asian region. Sri Lanka has a developed and established capital market and complimenting infrastructure facilities especially in the services sector.
The Sri Lankan economy has markedly taken off since the 2009 ending of its 25-year long civil war. It is now one of the fastest-expanding economies in Asia, providing a highly favorable business environment for foreign enterprises. The past few years the country has seen a large influx of FDI’s in aid of development projects throughout the island.
After independence in 1948, the Colombo Port was expanded with the construction of the Queen Elizabeth Quay with 16 alongside berths, transit sheds, and warehouses. The harbor underwent a major transformation to handle containerized cargo in early 1980s with Cranes, Gantries and other staples of a contemporary container terminal followed by deepening the access channel in the 1990s. The strategic location of the port of Colombo amidst trade routes became more attractive to main line shipping than any other port in the region.
Today the Port of Colombo is rated among the top 30 container ports in the world, and is poised for accelerated growth as it competes with regional heavy weights in the International Maritime Arena such as Port Klang and Port of Singapore.
Given the strategic locality of the Port of Colombo, it handles mainly transshipment volumes which are fed to/from the Indian Sub-Continent, while also acting as a hub for large vessels in the East-West trade route between the Far-Eastern Ports and Europe. Colombo port handled a volume of 5.20 Mteu in 2015, up from 4.90 Mteu (+5.7%) in 2014. The increase follows a rather impressive year-on-year bump of 14.0% from 2013.
Its location - at the center of a major trade route between Asia and Europe - places Sri Lanka in an advantageous position compared to many other South Asian nations when it comes to connectivity with many of the markets in Europe and the Middle East. This offers a significant edge to those manufacturers whose supply chains extend across the East, but whose major markets are in the West, allowing them substantial cost savings in terms of logistics as well as shorter delivery times.
Sri Lanka’s close proximity to India is another key benefit for foreign manufacturers. Given India’s comparable market size to China (in terms of population), Sri Lanka is sometimes dubbed the “Hong Kong of India”. It has the potential to become an increasingly important trade hub serving the country, just as Hong Kong has for the Chinese mainland. In fact, manufacturers in Sri Lanka can benefit from the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in place with India. Under this FTA, most products manufactured in Sri Lanka can enjoy duty-free treatment when exported to India, the world’s second most-populous market with more than 1.2 billion people. In addition, the FTA signed between Pakistan and Sri Lanka also provides duty-free entry for almost all Sri Lankan exports to Pakistan, the world’s sixth most-populous country, with more than 185 million people. It is worth noting that an FTA between China and Sri Lanka is expected to be signed in 2015, adding further benefits to trade with - and through - the country.
Another indication of the highly accelerated economic growth in Sri Lanka is the Indo-Lanka Free Trade Agreement, which is directly linked to SAFTA (South Asian Free Trade Agreement). India which is considered the giant in the Indian Sub-Continent and also labelled as the next "China PRC". Selecting Sri Lanka ahead of Pakistan and Bangladesh gives ample evidence to business community about the enormous potential and opportunities available as a low cost based, but a high quality manufacturing and a trading country. Sri Lanka is considered as the trading hub in the Indian Sub-Continent due to its perfect strategic and geographical location.