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'Indo-Sri Lankan trade can touch $ 10 billion by 2016'

NEW DELHI: Indo-Sri Lankan trade can more than double to $ 10 billion by 2016 on the back of mutual liberalised tariff regime, a top Sri Lankan diplomat today said here.

"Our target is that by 2016, the bilateral trade should be able to touch $ 10 billion...," Sri Lankan High Commissioner to India Prasad Kariyawasam said at a PHD Chamber function here. 

"But for this, we need to liberalise tariff regimes on both the sides, Kariyawasam said. 

"There are non-tariff barriers on the Indian side and few tariff barriers on the Sri Lankan side. So, such things have to be ironed out in such a manner that the trade becomes more balanced between the two countries," he said. 

In 2012, the two-way trade between the two nations stood $ 4 billion. 

India's exports to Sri Lanka includes 
auto parts, cereals, agricultural items and paper products, while imports from Sri Lanka are garments and spices. 

Besides, Kariyawasam said, there is more room for Indian investments in Sri Lanka in a number of sectors such as infrastructure, tourism and services. 

"We have a vibrant and brilliant economic partnership. Indian companies can use Sri Lanka as a launching pad for reaching to Asian and African nations," he said.