The Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA), the apex Government body for Technology Startup Development in the country has been the catalyst in driving the startup ecosystem forward during the past decade.
In its efforts to create a favorable environment for startups and contribute towards a startup-friendly government, ICTA in collaboration with PricewaterhouseCoopers Sri Lanka (PwC) recently launcheda survey study to accelerate tech startup ecosystem ‘Towards a Startup Friendly Government’ –a comprehensive report which focuses on the impediments facedby startups and enablers in Sri Lanka. The study also recommends respective remedial action plan to overcome such impediments.
The surveyreportwas launched at a Press Conference held on the 29th of June 2021 with the participation of Eng. Mahinda B. Herath – Chief Executive Officer, ICTA, Mr. Anura De Alwis – Chief Digital Economy Officer, ICTA, Mr. TishanSubasinghe – Member, Presidential Commission on the Simplification of Existing Laws and Regulations, Mr. Aruna Perera, Director – Corporate Finance and Valuation Consulting, PwC Sri Lanka, Mr. Mangala Karunaratne – CEO, Calcey Technologies, Ms. Ruchira Shukla –South Asia Regional Lead for Disruptive Technology Investments, International Finance Corporation (IFC), World Bank Group and Mr.Sachindra Samararatne- Director Startup Ecosystem Development, ICTA
The survey provides a broader view of the current tech startup ecosystem, focuses on the impediments which need to be addressed and possible solutions that can be implemented together with the government authorities. The survey also presents a collaborative approach where the government authorities can work closely with the startup ecosystem for the betterment of startups.
The report complied with the guidance and support of a 5-member steering committee comprising of key stakeholders in the startup ecosystem chaired by Mr. Mano Sekaram–CEO, 99X, ICTA Deputy Chairman, Chairman of Steering Committee, including Mr. Mangala Karunaratne – CEO, Calcey Technologies, Mr. ChalindaAbeykoon – CEO, Lankan Angel Network, Mr. Dhanika Perera – CEO, Bhasha Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Mr. Wellington Perera – Director, Cemex Software (Pvt) Ltd and Ms. JayomiLokuliyana – CEO, ZMessenger (Pvt) Ltd.
The significance of the study is that while showcasing a deep dive assessment of the impediments faced by the startups, it has also recommended a remedial action plan which derived after analyzing case studiesof the other countries in similar nature. The proposed remedial action plan has further been localized to support local startups and make sure that these startups receive the due support from the government entities.