Mr Fazal Abdeen

For the first time the Free Trade Zone Manufactures’ Association, (FTZMA) Katunayake will build a hostel to house their employees.

Speaking to Daily News Business the new Chairman of the FTZMA, Fazal Abdeen said that this would help more employees to seek employment at the Katunayake zone.

“Lack of quality hostel facilities is one of the main reasons for job seekers to shun employment at the zone,” he said.

Some of the member organizations too have made proposals to them to build hostel facilities for the workers and the same was forwarded to BOI.

Chairman FTZMA also proposed BOI to uplift the quality of the BOI Bus Terminal.

It was also agreed to explore the possibility of putting up a E-hoarding at the bus terminal and to operate it by the Zone Management for zone enterprises to display their vacancy advertisements and to rent the rest of the advertising time to the service providers.

FTZMA made a proposal for a On Line Permit System and it was implemented in May 2015 by BOI successfully.

A additional gate at Phase-II was constructed as an emergency purpose gate on request of the FTZMA and the idea was mooted by the Chairman of FTZMA.

The BOI agrees to the view of FTZMA that the solution has to be a private public partnership to provide the necessary funding to the project.

In order to provide a hassle free commute for actual investors and their principal representatives FTZMA has proposed the issuance of 5-year residence visas to such CIPs. This is to be given on a selective and exclusive manner to prevent malpractices.

The matter was taken up at the One Stop Shop meeting conducted by economic advisor, P. Paskaralingam in collaboration with the BOI. It was principally agreed to provide the facility once the administrative mechanism is in place. BOI agreed to identify suitable BOI lands for this.

On request of member companies FTZMA requested BOI to prepare guidelines to KEPZ Enterprises regarding the usage of sound systems without disturbing the neighboring enterprises.

“On an idea mooted by my immediate predecessor Dhammika Fernando a couple of years back A day Care centre too was set up.”

FTZMA also held several meeting with line ministers to iron out several issues.

FTZMA as at 2015 have 57 members in total out of which, 44 are from different sectors of manufacturing and 13 apparel manufacturers.