Representatives of the employers organizations of Afghanistan , Bangla Desh , India , Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka met in Colomba, Sri Lanka, on October 4th and 5th 2011. The meeting was an initiative by DECP , the training institute of ILO ( ITC/ILO) and ILO New Delhi.
During the meeting the high level representatives had an exchange of views about the economic situation in the South Asian region. It was noted that despite the economic progress in their countries there is much scope for improvement, with economic growth and the alleviation of poverty as the ultimate objective. It was also noted that most of the exports are directed towards European and American markets and that the intra trade between the countries is at a low level due to the not so favourable Business climate in and between their countries.
The participants pledged to address the items of business climate and intra trade in their respective countries and to do so, wherever appropriate, in cooperation with relevant business organizations in their countries.
It was agreed to create a network between the employers’ organizations which will be serviced by the Employers’ Federation of Ceylan . The participants agreed to meet again in Colombo in October 2012 in order to monitor progress and to have an exchange of views on items of common interest.
The meeting was moderated by Arnout de Koster of ITC/ILO , Gota Dassanayaka of ILO New Delhi and Jan Karel Bout of DECP .