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Director General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization Li Yong

UN’s global industry body first entered Sri Lanka in 1969 for a chemical project-and since then, has implemented 240 projects in the country, with six new projects now on the cards.

“Sri Lanka has embarked on an ambitious development drive under the reform vision of the leaders of the Unity Government. UNIDO has implemented around 240 projects in the country with a total budget of more than US $ 52 million” says Director General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization Li Yong. Yong, the former Vice-Minister of the Ministry of Finance of China, is writing about UNIDO’s presence in Sri Lanka in commemoration of 50th global anniversary of United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) that falls this Thursday November 17.

“UNIDO has dedicated itself to supporting industrialization in developing countries to drive inclusive growth through productivity enhancement, employment creation and income generation. This approach is embodied in UNIDO’s mandate – inclusive and sustainable industrial    development (ISID). The three  thematic   priorities under the ISID mandate are creating shared prosperity, advancing economic competitiveness and safeguarding the environment” said UNIDO DG Yong in his statement, and adds: “The first UNIDO project in Sri Lanka was an intervention to assist with the development of the chemical industry in 1969. Since then, UNIDO has implemented around 240 projects in the country with a total budget of more than US $ 52 million. The official counterpart of UNIDO is the Ministry of Industry, and collaboration  has been guided by an agreement signed in 1999. Two  integrated programmes have been set up in Sri Lanka by UNIDO, the first from 1999 to 2005 and the second from 2005 until 2008. The first one covered two main areas, namely improving competitiveness and developing a quality infrastructure, and protecting the environment.