One of the largest worldwide association’s for investor immigration and citizenship-by-investment, the Investment Migration Council (IMC) has accepted Sri Lanka as one of its global destinations to promote investor migration.
Based in Switzerland, IMC in a statement has stated that Sri Lankan political and economic fabric is suitable to promote their members to live and invest. The ‘peace and no conflict’ factor in Sri Lanka has also been taken into account.
The last budget also spelled out positive legislature to woo more foreign investments and this too was reviewed positively by IMC. “In addition the IMC is also keen on the government move to relax regulations on purchasing of apartments by foreigners.”
Sri Lanka is the first country in the SAARC region to be approved by IMC for business migration.
The IMC works on a global level and interacts with other professional associations, governments and international organisations in relation to investment migration. The IMC helps to improve public understanding of the issues faced by clients and governments in this area and promotes education and high professional standards among its members.
The IMC has now appointed Chairman of Grow Sri Lanka Investment and Export Development National Program and Property Club, Dr. Prabath Ukwatta as their Sri Lanka representative and plans to offer a time slot in their next global conference in September in Turkey for Sri Lanka. “This global conference in Turkey would be attended by over 1,000 senior entrepreneurs, agents who promote migration and would be an ideal opportunity to talk about Sri Lanka and promote investor migration.” Dr. Ukwatte said that he has been lobbying to get Sri Lanka included in the IMC for the past 18 months and last month Sri Lanka was accepted.”
He said that the IMC has many ‘landlords’ that owns SME’s and they are keen to set up ventures in different counties and also retire.”
He said that last year IMC members has done business migration to the tune of Euro 1.5 billion and he is confident that Sri Lanka can attract at least 10% of this business migration in the next two years.
“The preferred destination for investors by IMC members in Asia last year was Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.”
Most of the IMC members take around US. 1.5 million buy their dwellings and then invests the rest in a SME business mainly in agriculture, leisure sector or industry. These can also be joint ventures.”
Dr. Ukwatta said subsequent to the conference in Turkey and the presentation made on Sri Lanka there will be IMC representatives that will visit Sri Lanka and provide their positive feedback. “Based on these feed backs IMC and it individual members will lassie with Lanka Property Club seeking opportunities.”
He said that he has already briefed the Finance Ministry, Ministry of Primary Industries and the investment Promotion Ministry in this regard.Meanwhile the inaugural Grow Sri Lanka awards ceremony would be held on November 7 at Colombo Hilton.
The event is organized by the Lanka Property Club with the assistance of the Presidential Secretariat, Board of Investment, Export Development Board and Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.