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CBF at CHOGM The Hon Julia Gillard MP Prime Minister, Australia & Chair in Office of the Commonwealth “The nations and peoples of the Commonwealth are enormously diverse, yet these values we share, our distinctive way of doing things and our distinctive set of concerns for the world’s people, unite us in a way that is truly wonderful ... Our friends in the Business Council call it the “Commonwealth factor”, the web of connections, friendships and values that drive opportunity among the 54 nations of our fellowship.”

The Right Hon Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak, Prime Minister, Malaysia “I am of the view that the Commonwealth Business Forum is an ideal platform for the business community to network, exchange valuable experience and knowledge, as well as explore business opportunities and collaboration in areas of interest “

Hon Dr Lawrence Gonzi Prime Minister, Malta “In the short time since its inception in 1997, the Commonwealth Business Forum has successfully demonstrated the Commonwealth’s continuing capacity to meet the changing needs of its members - small and large economies alike - by developing practical ways of facilitating trade and investment”

HE Goodluck Jonathan President, Nigeria “I thank the CBC for creating the environment and providing this platform and for supporting Africa’s development by organizing this dialogue. This collaboration must be the beginning of a structured and mutually beneficial engagement between the Commonwealth business community and Africa.”

HE Paul Kagame President, Rwanda “I appreciate the unwavering support received from CBC during Rwanda's application to join the Commonwealth. Now that Rwanda is a formal member, we look forward to an even stronger partnership to promote business and investment not only in our country, but in Africa as a whole.”

Hon Kamla Persad Bissessar Prime Minister, Trinidad And Tobago “I extend warmest congratulations to the Commonwealth Business Council for its foresight in bringing together such a distinguished group of businessmen, entrepreneurs, investors and financiers for the purpose of fostering economic partnerships for the benefit of the family of Commonwealth nations. “

HE Yoweri Museveni President, Uganda “Amongst the Commonwealth countries, there is significant untapped potential. With active involvement of the private sector in partnership with governments, this potential can be harnessed in a wide range of sectors...CBF provides an ideal platform to help achieve these goals in order to promote economic growth and sustainable development”

Welcome Message by His Excellency Mahinda Rajapaksa, President of Sri Lanka Ayubowan On behalf of the Government and the people of Sri Lanka, I extend my warm greetings and best wishes to the Commonwealth Business Forum (CBF). The CBF is an integral part of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) that is being jointly organized by the Government of Sri Lanka and the Commonwealth Business Council. Sri Lanka, as a founder member of the modern Commonwealth, considers it a great honour to host CHOGM and its parallel events. The theme of CBF 2013 is “Partnership for Wealth Creation and Social Development: The Commonwealth, Indian Ocean and SAARC�. This theme is indeed timely and relevant to us for several reasons. First, South Asia is home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world today, although equitable wealth creation is still a challenge for the policy makers. Second, social development, which is fostered by inclusive growth strategies, has been lagging in several countries in the Commonwealth including some in the Indian Ocean regions, and private entrepreneurship, global linkages and strong institutional support are therefore needed to sustain this growth momentum and make it inclusive. In that background, the time is now ripe for the Commonwealth, Indian Ocean and SAARC countries to use the opportunities of their long standing relationships as they move into this new era of development. The Commonwealth has a combination of developed and developing countries with diverse cultures and traditions. This diversity creates a fertile ground for the exchange of technological know-how, skills and investments that would foster sustainable economic partnerships between businesses and Governments in the Commonwealth. While technology and investment are necessary, nations must also develop healthy interactions to build strong institutions that could convert the decisions and agreements reached at these international fora, into realistic practices and processes that would deliver the desired outcomes. Sri Lanka is delighted to host CBF 2013 as we too have embarked on a journey of rapid and inclusive growth. The country is now well positioned to become an important economic centre in the region, with the launch of an ambitious five hub strategy for economic development. Under this strategy, aviation, commercial, energy, knowledge and naval hubs will connect South Asia to the rest of the world. I am confident that the Governments, businesses and all other participants at this forum will benefit by the opportunity to network and build lasting relationships. Needless to say, the benefits of partnerships amongst us, can lead to significant growth, improving the prospects of all participants to serve their communities and countries. Let me therefore, with great pleasure, welcome you to the Commonwealth Business Forum 2013 in Colombo, and wish you success in all your endeavours. Mahinda Rajapaksa President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

Draft Programme

Registration Day: Monday, 11 November 12.00-19.00 Registration 17.00-18.00 Speaker Reception & Forum Briefing (by invitation only)

Day One: Tuesday, 12 November 09:00-10:30 Opening CeremonyPartnering for Wealth Creation and Social Development The Commonwealth brings together some to the world’s wealthiest and poorest countries, this session will focus on forming partnerships to ensure that the benefits of growth reach the whole of society and guarantee widespread social development. Keynote Address: HE Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, President, Sri Lanka

10:30-11:00 Refreshments and Networking Break 11:00-12:30 The Commonwealth, Indian Ocean, Pacific and SAARC: Building New Partnerships With a significant population base, skills and natural resources these regions draw together some of the world’s fast growing and most dynamic countries. This session will help set the agenda for the Forum and focus on building new partnerships for business and Government.


Hosted Networking Lunches 1) Hosted Lunch 3) Hosted Lunch

2) Hosted Lunch 4) Hosted Lunch

14.00-15.30 Developing the Rural Economy for Sustainable Shared Growth Developing the rural economy is a key aim for many Commonwealth countries development agendas. This session will examine the challenges and opportunities for partnerships to ensure sustained growth in rural areas including in; Agriculture, Infrastructure and Education.

14.00-15.30 Partnership Roundtables 1) Infrastructure Development

2) BPO & Business Outsourcing

15.30-16.00 Refreshments and Networking Break 16.00-17.25 Developing Small & Medium Business for Greater Wealth Creation SMEs are the life-blood of all economies, be they large or small, developed or emerging, they are the largest employers and the most entrepreneurial of sectors. This session will look at ways to ensure sustained growth, access to finance and methods of internationalisation.

16.00-17.25 Partnership Roundtables 1) Green Growth & Climate Change


2) Energy Infrastructure

Sri Lanka: Trading Hub for the Indian Ocean and SAARC Sri Lanka’s geographic position puts it at the heart of one of the global economy’s fastest growing and high volume regions. This session will look at the opportunities for Sri Lanka to further develop its regional presence as a trading and business hub.


Partnership Roundtables 1) Business and Society


2) Strengthening the SME Sector

Reception & Gala Dinner: Celebrating Sri Lanka and the Commonwealth Address: HE Kamalesh Sharma, Commonwealth Secretary General Keynote Address: HE Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, President, Sri Lanka

Draft Programme

Day Two: Wednesday, 13 November 07:30-08:45 Hosted Breakfast Sessions 1) Hosted Breakfast 3) Hosted Breakfast

2) Hosted Breakfast 4) Hosted Breakfast

09.00-10.30 Sri Lanka: 21st Century Business Destination For the last 5 years Sri Lanka has averaged 7% growth and is expected to continue to grow even faster over the next decade. This session will examine the opportunities in Sri Lanka and provide business views on how to super charge the country’s development.

09.00-10.30 Partnership Roundtables 1) Urban Development & Cities of the Future

2) Engaging Communities though Education

10.30-11.00 Refreshments and Networking Break 11.00-12.30 Infrastructure Challenges: New Global Partnerships Infrastructure deficits are the most common impediment to growth across the Commonwealth, this session will look at ways of tackling this challenge by examining the potential for partnerships between Government and business, development banks and donor organisation.

11.00-12.30 Partnership Roundtables 1) Innovation & Financial Services

2) Agriculture & Agri-business

12.30-14.00 Hosted Networking Lunches 1) Hosted Lunch 3) Hosted Lunch

2) Hosted Lunch 4) Hosted Lunch

14.00-15.30 Banking and Financial Services: Enhancing Access & Economic Resilience Credible, reliable and trustworthy banking and financial services provide the engine for growth in all sectors of the economy. This session will examine ways of strengthening this critical sector and ensuring that it is accessible to all sectors of society.

14.00-15.30 Partnership Roundtables 1) Textiles & Apparel

2) Ensuring Regional Skill Requirements are Met by Education

15.30-16.00 Refreshments and Networking Break 16.00-17.25 Tourism: A Critical Driver of Growth Tourism is a mainstay of many of Commonwealth countries’ economies, increasing the number of visitors, increasing employment and brings much need foreign currency. This session will examine ways of increasing tourism without threatening the local economy or ecosystem.

16.00-17.25 Partnership Roundtables 1) Digital Growth & ICT


2) Innovation and Young Entrepreneurs

Strategic Partnerships for Manufacturing, Design & Value Addition The manufacturing sector is one of the biggest employers in the Commonwealth and responsible for a large share of many countries’ export earnings. This session will examine ways of expanding this sector and ensuring the highest possible value is extracted from exported goods.


Partnership Roundtables 1) Sport for Development & Growth


Reception & Gala Dinner Keynote Address: Visiting Head of Government Guests of Honour: Commonwealth Foreign Ministers

2) Commonwealth Businesswomen's Network

Draft Programme

Day Three: Thursday, 14 November 07:30-08:45 Hosted Breakfast Sessions 1) Hosted Breakfast 2) Hosted Breakfast

2) Hosted Breakfast 4) Hosted Breakfast

09:00-09:55 Energy and Natural Resource Development: Commonwealth Partnerships Many Commonwealth countries are richly endowed with Energy and Mineral resources and are in a position to feed the ever growing global demand for natural resources. This session will examine ways and share experience of successful resource development

09:00-09:55 Invest In: Country Roundtable Chair: Visiting Head of Government

10:00-10:55 Africa & Asia: Reshaping Partnerships for Sustainable Growth Africa and Asia will be the drivers of global growth for the 21st Century, this session will focus on ways of ensuring that growth is sustained and to the benefit of all.

10:00-10:55 Invest In: Country Roundtable Chair: Visiting Head of Government


Refreshments and Networking Break

11:30-12:25 Tackling Unemployment: Education, Knowledge and Skills Unemployment is a challenge for all countries and an educated and highly skilled workforce is key to ensuring that growth and development don't stall in the mid to long term. This session will examine the potential for partnerships across the Commonwealth and share best practice and experience on tackling unemployment.

11:30-12:25 Invest In: Country Roundtable Chair: Visiting Head of Government

12:30-13:25 Strengthening National Economies through Global Business and Trade Global business provides employment and gives consumers increased choice at lower prices. This session will examine how economic growth can be enhanced though further linkages between large and small business and partnerships between government and business.

12:30-13:25 Invest In: Country Roundtable Chair: Visiting Head of Government

13:30-15:00 Concluding Session & Official Lunch: Building new Partnerships: The Way Forward Keynote Address: Visiting head of Government

15:00-16:30 Sri Lankan President’s Roundtable with Heads of Government and Business Leaders Chair: HE Mr Mahinda Rajapaksa, President, Sri Lanka (By Invitation Only)

Doing Business at CBF 2013 The Forum will feature a project portfolio of investment proposals that are looking for funding, equity or business partners. The Business Matching Centre will enable participants to meet with potential investors, investment bankers, and potential knowledge partners to present their projects. Project summaries will be available in advance to interested investors and partners and project holders will be available for one-to-one meetings. Projects will be organised by country and sector and include business plans with identified requirements in terms of investment required, technical and knowledge-

Business-to-Business Meetings at CBF 2007

based requirements. For potential investors, this is an opportunity to establish strong partnerships and explore investment opportunities in key sectors such as ICT, financial services, tourism, infrastructure, agriculture, manufacturing and the environment. The Centre will bring together entrepreneurs looking to access finance and new markets, investors and companies looking for new markets or projects, and companies looking for external markets and knowledge partnerships to improve their competitiveness. facilitated business meetings at CBF 2009

B2B Forum activities will include: •

a Business Matching Lounge for between project holders and investors/partners

a project book and digital version with summaries of projects and short profiles of potential partners/ investors

an Exhibition Centre to enable companies/countries to showcase products and services

The opportunity to present country or sector strategies in breakout sessions of the Forum

Site visits to key projects

meetings potential

Exhibition Centre at CBF 2011

The Centre will bring together businesses and a wide range of potential investors, government bodies and global technology and knowledge based industries.

Commonwealth Business Forum 2013  

CBF 2013 Brochure

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