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The 55th Workshop Meeting of Heads of NPOs (WSM) convened in Colombo from 21–23 October 2014. It was attended by 35 NPO and agriculture delegates and 17 advisers representing APO members at the meeting alongside observers from the World Bank, FAO, and Pan African Productivity Association. The main agenda items of the WSM are to deliberate on the APO Program Plan for the 2015–2016 Biennium, discuss the Proposed Roadmap to achieve the APO Vision 2020, and present the impact evaluation of 2012–2013 projects.
The meeting opened with welcome remarks by APO Director for Sri Lanka Upali Marasinghe, who reported that 2014 and 2015 would be another turning point in the productivity journey in Sri Lanka as, “The Ministry of Productivity Promotion has initiated several initiatives to formulate, implement, and reorient productivity policies. The assistance provided by the APO for various training courses, workshops, conferences, observational study missions, seminars, and e- learning programs has made a significant contribution to achieving expected goals.”
He was followed by the opening remarks by HE Basheer Segudawood, Minister of Productivity Promotion, who declared that, “Sri Lanka is now moving from a factor-driven economy toward an efficiency-driven economy-cum innovation-driven economy. Improvements in productivity and creativeness will create innovations leading to higher productivity, which will yield higher per capita income for the country.”
HE Dr. Sarath Amunugama, Senior Minister of International Monetary Co-operation and Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning, delivered the inaugural address. In his address, he noted that, “Sri Lanka has made valuable investments in technology fields.” He emphasized balance among economic, political, and social aspects of technology-led economic growth to achieve sustainable and inclusive development benefitting the whole population.
During the WSM, NPO Delegate from Sri Lanka Marasinghe was elected Chair and NPO Delegate from Singapore Leung Wai Ling as Vice Chair. Secretary-General Mari Amano reiterated that, “Delegates at this WSM are expected to reconfirm their hosting of multicountry projects and propose modifications to projects, if any are necessary. Each member country should ideally host at least one multicountry project in the spirit of mutual cooperation.” Secretary-General Amano also pointed out that, “This will also help enhance the relevancy and raise the awareness and visibility of APO activities in host member countries.”
During Plenary Session 1, the APO Secretariat reported on the APO Center of Excellence on Green Productivity. That was followed by a summary of the Strategic Planning Workshop for APO Liaison Officers held in Tokyo in August. An update was also given on Category C projects. Two proposals on the creation of the National Follow-up Program Scheme and the roadmap to achieve the APO Vision 2020 were presented.
During Plenary Session 2, each NPO presented its country’s latest economic goals in key sectors. Strategic Planning Session 1 took place with delegates breaking out into different groups to discuss the Proposed Roadmap to Achieve the APO Vision 2020 in detail.
(Photos courtesy of the National Productivity Secretariat.)
Click here for speeches delivered during the 54th WSM.
Opening remarks by HE Basheer Segudawood, Minister of Productivity Promotion
Welcome remarks by APO Director for Sri Lanka Upali Marasinghe
Statement by APO Secretary-General Mari Amano