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Sri Lanka to launch online tracker to solve SME’s issues
29 Aug, 2014 11:49:28
August 29, 2014 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is to launch an online support system focusing on the issues faced by the small and medium entrepreneurs in the island, Ministry of Industry and Commerce said in a media release.
“This issue tracker will focus on the problems and difficulties of SME,” Rishad Bathiudeen, Minister of Industry and Commerce, Sri Lanka was quoted in the release.

“I and NEDA thank the Asia Foundation for extending its valuable support to develop this online system valued at more than 13000 US dollars.”

Bathiudeen was addressing the launching event of “Public Private Dialogue Issue Tracker Website” organised by National Enterprise Development Authority (NEDA) in collaboration with The Asia Foundation (TAF) yesterday (28) at Colombo.

In Sri Lanka’s context, 65 percent of its GDP comes from the SME sector ministry said in the release.

The SME issue tracker is a software, developed by the Asia Foundation’s Local Economic Governance Program placed under NEDA to track, measure and manage issues, emerge from various Enterprise Forums and working groups that are taken up at local, provincial and national level private public dialogues.

“In many Asian countries, businesses often face opaque licencing procedures, volatile law and order conditions and endemic corruption. Small biz with limited access to capital carry a disproportionate amount of these burdens,” Dinesha Wickremanayake, country representative of the Asia Foundation said.

“The tool has the potential to help the public and private sectors to work together for more rapid and effective reform. It’s also a repository to share experiences and insights.”

“The system will track whether their logged issues have been solved, if not why and who is responsible to solve it. This is almost a first in the entire South Asian region. We’ve been working on this for almost three years since we have to make it fit to Sri Lankan SMEs.”

NEDA launched another tool called “The Business Environment Barometer” which will collect, organise, analyse and report experiences from a carefully selected sample of entrepreneurs from the SME and informal sectors.

The tool will periodically present views and experiences of entrepreneurs and micro biz operating in formal and informal sectors on a set of predetermined indicators that reflect the status of biz at sub national level

The tools will become active for the public from mid-September the ministry said.

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