Sri Lanka

GDP (US$ Billion)

83.57 (2017)

World Ranking 65/191

GDP Per Capita (US$)

3,906 (2017)

World Ranking 115/190

Economic Structure

(in terms of GDP composition, 2018)


External Trade (% of GDP)

50.5 (2016)

Currency (Period Average)

Sri Lankan Rupee

152.45 per US$ (2017)

Political System

Unitary multiparty republic


Sri Lanka is transitioning from a predominantly rural-based economy towards a more urbanised economy oriented around manufacturing and services. Economic growth has translated into shared prosperity with the national poverty headcount ratio declining from 15.3% in 2006/07 to 4.1% in 2016. However overall debt levels are high and the country has seen muted growth in expenditure on infrastructure development in recent quarters. With the support of the World Bank, the government is carrying out fiscal reforms, improving public financial management, increasing public and private investments, addressing infrastructure constraints and improving competitiveness. The launch of the country's Vision 2025 plan on September 4, 2017 was designed to strengthen democracy and reconciliation, inclusive and equitable growth and ensure good governance.

Sources: World Bank, Fitch Solutions


Major Economic/Political Events and Upcoming Elections

September 2013
The Tamil National Alliance opposition party won the first elections of the semi-autonomous provincial council in the north, with 78% of the vote.


January 2015
Maithripala Sirisena became president.


July 2016
The government announced its aim for Sri Lanka to become completely demilitarised by 2018.


February 2017
The government implemented the right to Information Act intended to curb corruption and provide timely information to the public.


February 2018
Local elections were held. Opposition party Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) won the majority of councils.


December 2018
Ranil Wickremesinghe was reinstated as prime minister.


June 2019
The Export-Import Bank of China (China Exim Bank) extended a loan of around USD1 billion to support construction of the 37.09km first section, Kadawatha-Mirigama, of the E04 Central Expressway project in Sri Lanka. The expressway would connect Colombo to Kandy. The loan covers 85% of the total contract price. The remaining 15% cost would be financed by a loan from two state banks on a Treasury guarantee.


July 2019
The government cut airline charges on July 8, 2019 in a bid to boost tourism. This move was accompanied by the reinstatement of the free visa program for 39 countries.


August 2019
Nepal-based CG Cement unveiled plans to build a new integrated cement facility in Mannar, Sri Lanka. The project, which would entail an investment of USD150 million, has already secured approval from the government of Sri Lanka.


November 2019
Sri Lanka’s Election Commission Chairman Mahinda Deshapriya confirmed that the presidential election will take place between November 15 and December 7.


Sources: BBC Country Profile – Timeline, Fitch Solutions, National Sources

Major Economic Indicators
Graph: Sri Lanka real GDP and inflation
Graph: Sri Lanka real GDP and inflation
Graph: Sri Lanka GDP by sector (2018)
Graph: Sri Lanka GDP by sector (2018)
Graph: Sri Lanka unemployment rate
Graph: Sri Lanka unemployment rate
Graph: Sri Lanka current account balance
Graph: Sri Lanka current account balance

e = estimate, f = forecast
Sources: IMF, World Bank, Work Bank (ILO modelled estimates), World Economic Outlook Database, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

External Trade

Merchandise Trade

Graph: Sri Lanka current account balance
Graph: Sri Lanka current account balance

Source: WTO
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

Graph: Sri Lanka major export commodities (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major export commodities (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major export markets (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major export markets (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major import commodities (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major import commodities (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major import markets (2017)
Graph: Sri Lanka major import markets (2017)

Sources: Trade Map, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019


Trade in Services

Graph: Sri Lanka trade in services
Graph: Sri Lanka trade in services

e = estimate
Note: All imports are estimated
Source: WTO
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

Trade Policies
  • Sri Lanka has been a World Trade Organization (WTO) member since January 1995, adopting a liberal trade regime. The strict controls over imported agricultural items that may be detrimental to certain local plants and live animals, have been changed and companies are allowed to trade freely without special restrictions.

  • Sri Lanka's tariffs range from 0 to 30% under a four-band tariff structure with rates being 0%, 15% and 30%. Over 50% of the non-agricultural imports are deemed duty-free. Essential raw materials and inputs, such as cotton and textiles, are generally non-dutiable or subject to duties at lower rates.

  • Apart from tariffs, duties and taxes that any importer is liable to pay upon importation include excise duty, Nation Building Tax (NBT), Special Commodity Levy (SCL), and Value Added Tax (VAT). The VAT rate stands at 15%, with exemptions granted to some ICT equipment, construction equipment, pharmaceuticals, real estate, water, electricity, health and education.

  • Sri Lanka also has Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) agreements with Japan, United States, Canada, the European Union (EU), Norway, Turkey and New Zealand, as well as free trade agreements (FTAs) with India and Pakistan. GSP-plus was implemented again in May 2017 and the current regulations will be valid until 2023.

  • Exporters and importers may be subject to a range of additional tariffs and taxes intended to promote domestic industries and reduce the country's import bill. These may include a port and development levy on the value of cargo, in addition to other import and excise duties.

  • Sri Lanka is a member of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), which formed a South Asian Free Trade Area (SAFTA) in January 2006 with an aim to reduce duties for imports from member countries to between 0 to 5% within 10 years, though progress has not been satisfactory.

  • There are various export restrictions applied to goods such as bulk tea and natural sand. There are also export licencing requirements for metal products (raw and semi-processed materials) such as copper, zinc and other steel alloys.

  • There are various import bans in place that affect the autos sector, in addition to high import duties (for new vehicles). Vehicles older than two years are not permitted, and commercial vehicles older than four years are also not permitted under 2013 rules.

  • Sri Lanka also implements special commodity levies on imported vegetable oil, onions (and various other vegetables), sugar, garlic, dhal, watana, wheat, rice and fish.

Sources: WTO - Trade Policy Review, Fitch Solutions

Trade Agreement

Trade Updates

Sri Lanka and Mainland China have entered into FTA negotiations and these remain ongoing at the time of writing. Sri Lanka’s Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade and Mainland China’s Vice Minister of Commerce met on July 6, 2019 and held discussions around recommencing negotiations on the FTA and improving bilateral trade.


Multinational Trade Agreements


  1. The SAFTA: An agreement between states was reached on January 6, 2004. SAFTA creates a free trade area of nearly two billion people in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The seven foreign ministers of the region signed a framework agreement on SAFTA to reduce customs duties of all traded goods to zero by the year 2016. The SAFTA agreement came into force on January 1, 2006. The SAFTA requires the developing countries in South Asia (India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka) and least developing countries (Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan and the Maldives) to bring their duties down to 0% at staggered periods. The purpose of SAFTA is to encourage and elevate common contracts among the countries, such as medium- and long-term contracts. SAFTA also involves agreement on tariff concession, like national duties concession and non-tariff concession.

  2. The Asia Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA): Formerly the Bangkok Agreement signed in 1975, the APTA is one of Asia's oldest regional preferential trading agreements with six participating states – Bangladesh, mainland China, India, Laos, South Korea and Sri Lanka. APTA is a dynamic regional agreement which has been instrumental in producing a favourable outcome for Sri Lanka. It is particularly important for Sri Lanka as it is the only trade agreement Sri Lanka partakes in with mainland China and South Korea. At the third session of the Ministerial Council held on December 15, 2009 in Seoul, two framework agreements were signed, one on trade facilitation and promotion and the other on protection and liberalisation of investment; both framework agreements incorporate separate chapters in services and investments. The APTA aims to promote economic development and cooperation through the adoption of mutually beneficial trade liberalisation measures. Further concessions are envisaged at the next rounds of trade negotiations, which will target widening products coverage and deepening the tariff cuts and adopting modalities for the extension of negotiations into other areas, such as non-tariff measures, trade facilitation, framework agreements on services and investment.

  3. Indo-Sri Lanka FTA (ISFTA): The ISFTA entered into force on March 1, 2000. Under this agreement, most products manufactured in Sri Lanka with at least 35% domestic value addition (if raw materials are imported from India, the domestic value addition requirement is only 25%) qualify for duty-free entry to the Indian market. Sri Lanka exports manufactured products to India, duty-free. Sri Lanka is eager to expand the current FTA with India to a broader Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA). While both the countries already have the benefits of a FTA in goods, recent bilateral talks have been aimed at widening the scope of this pact by including services and investments to make it comprehensive. To further strengthen economic cooperation between Sri Lanka and India, a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) is also under negotiation.

  4. Sri Lanka-Pakistan FTA: The FTA between Sri Lanka and Pakistan provides duty-free entry into Pakistan for almost all of Sri Lanka's exports except for 541 items on Pakistan's negative list. The FTA was implemented on June 12, 2005 and aims for the complete elimination of tariffs by the end of its fifth year.

Under Negotiation

  1. Mainland China-Sri Lanka FTA: mainland China is investing heavily in strategic ports and port-related industries in Sri Lanka. The FTA between mainland China and Sri Lanka, currently under negotiation, is set to boost the country's future development and promote trade with mainland China in sectors such as industry, energy, technology, infrastructure and tourism. Mainland China is a vitally important trade partner for Sri Lanka, supplying almost 20% of Sri Lanka's total imports in 2017 and purchasing approximately 4% of Sri Lanka's exports.

  2. Sri Lanka-Singapore FTA: The FTA between Sri Lanka and Singapore is aimed at promoting the bilateral trade of goods and services and to aid the continued expansion of Sri Lanka's manufacturing and services sectors. This partnership is likely to pave the way for higher quality sector expansion as this would facilitate the transfer of technology and best practices from Singapore, one of Sri Lanka's top 10 foreign investors, accounting for almost 10% of total foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows.

Sources: WTO Regional Trade Agreements database, Government websites, Fitch Solutions

Investment Policy

Foreign Direct Investment

Graph: Sri Lanka FDI stock
Graph: Sri Lanka FDI stock
Graph: Sri Lanka FDI flow
Graph: Sri Lanka FDI flow

Source: UNCTAD
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019


Foreign Direct Investment Policy

  1. In order to promote FDI, the Sri Lankan government has set up the Board of Investment (BOI), which currently manages 14 industrial parks and export processing zones (EPZs) in the country. Tax incentives and duty-free facilitation are given to qualified foreign investors. There are nine key investment sectors identified by the government with special incentives given to foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) in these sectors, specifically tourism and leisure, infrastructure, knowledge service, utilities, apparel, export manufacturing, export services, agriculture and education.

  2. The BOI plays a key role in the implementation of Sri Lanka's export-oriented industrialisation strategy. Textile and garments have become important industrial products after the development of the EPZs. The BOI plans to introduce new methods, including public-private partnerships for spurring investment. In the 2017 Budget, new incentive packages for landmark projects with investment between USD100-500 million and those more than USD500 million were included. Exchange control reform is also proposed to ease foreign exchange remittance to facilitate foreign investment.

  3. Sri Lanka's 2018 budget envisions pursuing a 'Blue-Green Development Strategy' that entails plans to integrate the full economic potential of ocean-related activities in formulating the overall growth strategy, and build the economy on an environmentally sustainable development strategy. The Enterprise Sri Lanka initiative is expected to promote entrepreneurial skills and facilitate not only established private sectors, but also the small business enterprises.

  4. Since the civil war ended in 2009, Sri Lanka has worked to rebuild and improve infrastructure, drawing in FDI to finance and undertake related infrastructure projects. Mainland China has been keen to participate in such projects, including the Sri Lankan port in Hambantota and the Colombo International Container Terminals. In July 2017, the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) and China Merchants Port Holdings (CMP) signed a joint-venture agreement under which up to USD1.12 billion will be invested to handle the commercial operations of the Chinese-built Hambantota Port on a 99-year lease, with the port expected to play a strategic role in the Belt and Road Initiative.

  5. The government has identified a wide range of targeted industrial sub-sectors to be promoted under the BOI to drive the economic development process of the country. In line with the new policy guidelines of the government, the manufacturing sector is to be promoted in three key segments: non-traditional products (which includes all products other than black tea in bulk, crepe rubber, sheet rubber, scrap rubber, coconut oil, desiccated coconut, copra, fresh coconuts, and coconut fibre), local manufacturers of substituted goods (which includes boats, pharmaceuticals, tyres and tubes, motor spare parts, furniture, ceramics, glassware, cosmetic products, edible products manufactured out of cultivated agricultural products, and construction materials), and large-scale projects of national interest.

  6. Foreign ownership is permitted with the exception of some sectors designated as strategic in defence-related industries, forestry and farmland. The government allows 100% foreign investment in any commercial, trading, or industrial activity other than a few specified sectors, including air transportation; coastal shipping; large-scale mechanised mining of gems; lotteries; manufacture of military hardware, military vehicles, and aircraft; dangerous drugs; alcohol; toxic, hazardous, or carcinogenic materials; currency; and security documents. These sectors are regulated and subject to approval by various government agencies. Environmental concerns continue to dent prospects for investors in the primary sector.

  7. A number of investment incentives are open to investors in Sri Lanka. These are laid out in the Strategic Development Project Act 2008, which provides tax incentives for large projects that the Cabinet identifies as Strategic Development Projects (SDP). These are defined as investments that are believed to be in the national interest, and likely to bring economic and social benefits through the provision of goods and services, substantial inflow of foreign currency, generation of employment and income, and transfer of technology. Projects classified as SDPs are exempted from taxes for up to 25 years in areas such as corporate income tax, VAT, economic service charge, debit tax, customs imports and export taxes, port and airport tax, and the NBT.

  8. Foreign investments in the following areas are restricted to 40% ownership: the production for export of goods subject to international quotas; growing and primary processing of tea, rubber, coconut; timber-based industries using local timber; deep-sea fishing; mass communications; education; freight forwarding; travel services; and businesses providing shipping services. Foreign ownership in excess of 40% must be pre-approved on a case-by-case basis by the BOI. Foreign investment is not permitted in the following businesses: non-bank money lending and pawn-brokering. Foreign ownership is allowed in most sectors, although the land ownership law prohibits foreigners from owning land, with some exceptions.

  9. Sri Lanka also has 14 major free-trade zones, also called EPZs, administered by the BOI. In addition, a large private apparel company opened Sri Lanka's first privately-run fabric park in 2007, and thereafter invited local and foreign companies to set up fabric and apparel factories in the park. A number of companies have chosen to locate their factories in and around Colombo to reduce transport time and costs. However, excessive concentration of industries around Colombo have caused heavy traffic, higher real estate prices, and a scarcity of labour. As a result, the BOI now encourages export-oriented factories to be set up in industrial zones outside of the capital, such as Koggola, Seethawaka, Biyagama, Mirigama, Polgahawela, Mawathagma, Kandy, Malwatta, Wathupitiwela, Sooriyawewa, and Mitijjalwela.

  10. Foreign ownership is allowed in most sectors, although the land ownership law prohibits foreigners from owning land with some exceptions. Foreigners are prohibited from purchasing land and real estate except for apartments above the 3rd floor. Currently, the cabinet can approve a land purchase for an investment in the national interest, provided there is a substantial foreign remittance for the purchase of the land. The new budget promised to relax restrictions on apartment ownership. Other policies of concern include the November 2011 Underutilised Assets Act, which resulted in the seizure of 37 companies.

Sources: WTO - Trade Policy Review, ITA, Fitch Solutions


Free Trade Zones and Investment Incentives

Free Trade Zone/Incentive Programme Main Incentives Available
14 Free Trade Zones, called EPZs, administered by the BOI Various corporate income tax and customs duty incentives; exchange control regulation exemptions are available. Sri Lanka and mainland China have jointly established the Sri Lanka-mainland China Logistics and Industrial Zone (SLCIZ) in Hambantota in the Southern Province which would be open for Chinese investors to establish factories. The government plans to allocate 1,000 acres of land for the zone. SLCIZ is expected to include the Hambantota Port which may be sold to a Chinese state-owned company.

Sources: US Department of Commerce, Fitch Solutions

Taxation – 2019
  • Value Added Tax: 15%
  • Corporate Income Tax: 28%

Source: Department of Inland Revenue


Important Updates to Taxation Information

A new Inland Revenue Act took effect on April 1, 2018. The corporate income tax rates will be revised to a three tier structure comprising of a lower rate of 14%, a standard rate of 28% and a higher rate of 40%. Commencing from the year of assessment 2018/19, companies are taxed only under three income tax rates: 14%, 40%, and 28%. There is no local or provincial income tax applicable to corporates in Sri Lanka. A number of measures have been proposed to increase tax revenue, chief among which motor vehicles excise duty and luxury tax revisions, duty revisions on VAT and NBT and introduction of a debt repayment levy (DRL). The government has also proposed several expenditure proposals mainly aimed at developing small- and medium-sized enterprises and reducing the budget deficit.


Business Taxes

Type of Tax Tax Rate and Base
Corporate Income Tax (standard rate) 28%
Corporate Income Tax for small- and medium enterprises (SMEs) that conduct business in Sri Lanka, which do not have an associate that is an entity and with an annual turnover less than LKR 500 million 14%
Corporate Income Tax for businesses predominantly conducting business of exporting goods and services 14%
Corporate Income Tax for businesses predominantly conducting business of an agricultural nature 14%
Corporate Income Tax for companies predominantly providing educational services 14%
Corporate Income Tax for companies predominantly in ICT 14%
Corporate Income Tax for companies predominantly engaged in the promotion of tourism 14%
Corporate Income Tax for business consisting of betting and gaming, liquor, and tobacco 40%
Branch Tax rate 28% on profits
Dividend Tax 14%
Gains from realisation of investment assets 10% on taxable earnings
Remittance Tax 14% on taxable earnings
VAT 15%
Tourism development levy, payable by tourist hotels and related institutions 1% on turnover
Customs duties Rates vary: 15%, 30%, and 0%
NBT 2% on turnover

Source: Department of Inland Revenue
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

Foreign Worker Requirements

Localisation Requirements

Local workers are given priority of employment and these permits are usually considered for work that locals are unable to do. Employment of foreign personnel is permitted when there is a demonstrated shortage of qualified local labour. Technical and managerial personnel are in short supply and this shortage is likely to continue in the medium term.


Obtaining Foreign Worker Permits for Skilled Workers

All foreign nationals must obtain visas (on-arrival visas or visas obtained prior to arrival) to enter Sri Lanka. Foreign nationals intending to work in Sri Lanka should obtain residence visas and work permits. Foreign employees in the commercial sector do not experience significant problems in obtaining work or residence permits. Obtaining a visa in advance is now a requirement and can be completed online from the Electronic Travel Authority or at a Sri Lankan embassy. Applications should take two working days, but can take longer in some cases. Foreign investors who remit at least USD250,000 can qualify for a one-year resident visa, which can be renewed.


Multiple-Entry Visas

Investors and business persons may obtain multiple-entry visas, which are valid for three or 12 months. To receive a multiple-entry visa, a foreign national must supply proof of his or her activities in Sri Lanka. These visas may be obtained from the Controller of Immigration and Emigration or from a Sri Lanka diplomatic mission abroad. For a three-month, multiple-entry visa, the fee is three times the fee for the single entry, three-month visit visa. For the 12-month, multiple-entry visa, the fee is the same as for a three-month, multiple-entry visa plus a tax of LKR10,000.

Sources: Government websites, Fitch Solutions


Sovereign Credit Ratings

  Rating (Outlook) Rating Date
Moody's B2 (stable) 20/11/2018
Standard & Poor's B (stable) 12/04/2018
Fitch Ratings B (stable) 12/04/2018

Sources: Moody's, Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings


Competitiveness and Efficiency Indicators

  World Ranking
2017 2018 2019
Ease of Doing Business Index 110/190 111/190 100/190
Ease of Paying Taxes Index 158/190 158/190 141/190
Logistics Performance Index N/A 94/160 N/A
Corruption Perception Index 91/180 89/180 N/A
IMD World Competitiveness N/A N/A N/A

Sources: World Bank, IMD, Transparency International


Fitch Solutions Risk Indices

  World Ranking
2017 2018 2019
Economic Risk Index N/A 81/202 80/202
Short-Term Economic Risk Score 54.4 54.6 53.8
Long-Term Economic Risk Score 57.2 55.6 56.1
Political Risk Index N/A 93/202 92/202
Short-Term Political Risk Score 70.0 66.0 61.7
Long-Term Political Risk Score 66.1 63.6 63.6
Operational Risk Index N/A 98/201 89/201
Operational Risk Score 51.8 49.5 51.0

Source: Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019


Fitch Solutions Risk Summary


Since 2009, Sri Lanka has seen the expansion of manufacturing, real estate, tourism and construction activities. Mainland China will remain Sri Lanka's largest source of FDI, as the country's strategic location makes it an ideal investment destination to advance the Belt and Road infrastructure plans. In addition, the government's initiatives to increase public-private partnership opportunities and leverage development expertise from countries such as India and Singapore will encourage higher investment inflows. However, there are substantial risks, such as a weak legal system that undermines the enforcement of contracts, and policy uncertainty and foreign investment restrictions in key sectors that weaken the investment environment. In the event of external weaknesses, the country runs the risk of foreign direct investment drying up.


The main barriers to trade and investment include sectoral restrictions to foreign investors, the dominance of state-owned enterprises, an uncertain legal environment, the threat of religious and ethno-political unrest emanating from minority groups and a highly ruralised population. That said, there are certainly benefits to investing in Sri Lanka for businesses willing to overcome these risks; chief among these are good quality transport infrastructure and strong connections to international trade routes. In addition, a cheap workforce with widespread basic skills lifts Sri Lanka above its regional peers that are competing to attract investment in secondary and tertiary industries.

Source: Fitch Solutions
Data last reviewed: August 8, 2019


Fitch Solutions Political and Economic Risk Indices

Graph: Sri Lanka short term political risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka short term political risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka long term political risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka long term political risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka short term economic risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka short term economic risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka long term economic risk index
Graph: Sri Lanka long term economic risk index

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest risk
Source: Fitch Solutions Political and Economic Risk Indices
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019


Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index

  Operational Risk Labour Market Risk Trade and Investment Risk Logistics Risk Crime and Security Risk
Sri Lanka Score 51.0 46.0 49.3 58.2 50.5
South Asia Average 42.0 44.3 40.4 43.4 40.0
South Asia Position (out of 8) 2 3 2 2 2
Asia Average 48.2 49.7 48.2 46.0 49.1
Asia Position (out of 35) 14 18 16 9 15
Global Average 49.6 50.3 49.8 49.0 49.2
Global Position (out of 201) 89 127 104 59 96

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest risk
Source: Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index


Graph: Sri Lanka vs global and regional averages
Graph: Sri Lanka vs global and regional averages
Country Operational Risk Index Labour Market Risk Index Trade and Investment Risk Index Logistics Risk Index Crime and Secruity Risk Index
India 52.1 45.9 53.6 61.8 47.0
Sri Lanka 51.0 46.0 49.3 58.2 50.5
Bhutan 49.1 43.6 44.7 51.0 57.3
Maldives 44.9 46.5 45.7 39.5 47.8
Pakistan 39.8 43.3 38.3 43.1 34.4
Bangladesh 38.3 51.7 29.0 39.0 33.5
Nepal 36.4 37.8 33.3 34.9 39.7
Afghanistan 24.5 39.5 29.0 19.7 9.7
Regional Averages 42.0 44.3 40.4 43.4 40.0
Emerging Markets Averages 46.9 48.6 45.4 47.4 46.1
Global Markets Averages 49.6 50.3 49.8 49.0 49.2

100 = Lowest risk; 0 = Highest risk
Source: Fitch Solutions Operational Risk Index
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

Hong Kong Connection

Hong Kong’s Trade with Sri Lanka

Graph: Major export commodities to Sri Lanka (2018)
Graph: Major export commodities to Sri Lanka (2018)
Graph: Major import commodities from Sri Lanka (2018)
Graph: Major import commodities from Sri Lanka (2018)

Note: Graph shows the main Hong Kong imports from/exports to Sri Lanka (by consignment)
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

Graph: Merchandise exports to Sri Lanka
Graph: Merchandise exports to Sri Lanka
Graph: Merchandise imports from Sri Lanka
Graph: Merchandise imports from Sri Lanka

Note: Graph shows Hong Kong imports from/exports to Sri Lanka (by consignment)
Exchange Rate HK$/US$, average
7.75 (2014)
7.75 (2015)
7.76 (2016)
7.79 (2017)
7.83 (2018)
Sources: Hong Kong Trade Statistics, Census and Statistics Department
Date last reviewed: July 18, 2019

  2018 Growth rate (%)
Number of Sri Lankan residents visiting Hong Kong 5,828
  2017 Growth rate (%)
Number of Sri Lankans residing in Hong Kong 794 1.5

Sources: Hong Kong Tourism Board, United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs – Population Division, Fitch Solutions

  2018 Growth rate (%)
Number of Asia Pacific residents visiting Hong Kong 61,043,576
  2017 Growth rate (%)
Number of South Asians residing in Hong Kong 36,680 1.6

Sources: United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs – Population Division, Fitch Solutions
Date last reviewed: July 19, 2019


Commercial Presence in Hong Kong

  2016 Growth rate (%)
Number of Sri Lanka companies in Hong Kong N/A N/A
- Regional headquarters
- Regional offices
- Local offices


Treaties and agreements between Hong Kong and Sri Lanka

Hong Kong has concluded an Avoidance of Double Taxation on income from shipping and aircraft transport agreement with Sri Lanka. This agreement entered into force on March 30, 2005.

Source: Hong Kong Department of Justice


Chamber of Commerce (or Related Organisations) in Hong Kong

Consulate of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

Address: Unit 905, 9/F, Sing Shun Factory Building, 495 Castle Peak Road, Cheung Sha Wan, Hong Kong


Tel: (852) 2581 4111

Fax: (852) 2587 7770

Source: Hong Kong Protocol Division of Government Secretariat


Visa Requirements for Hong Kong Residents

Hong Kong residents need a visa to visit Sri Lanka for a maximum stay of 30 days. All holiday or business travellers visiting Sri Lanka must obtain Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) prior to arrival.

Source: Visa on Demand

Date last reviewed: July 19, 2019

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