Mr. Bjarke Mikkelsen, CEO and Founder of Daraz, visited Sri Lanka on 14th and 15th February 2022 and held an exclusive meeting with the Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa.
The meeting touched upon the growth of e-commerce in Sri Lanka, the increasing digital transition of consumers and sellers, and Daraz’s commitment to harness the industry’s potential and to support Sri Lanka’s digital economy.
The meeting was held in the presence of Mr. CharithWijesinghe, Co-ordinating Secretary to the Hon. Prime Minister; Mr. Rakhil Fernando, Managing Director/Country Head of Daraz Sri Lanka; Mr. DarshikaAttanayake, Chief Operating Officer of Daraz Sri Lanka; Ms. Anishka De Zylva, Head of Public Policy of Daraz Sri Lanka; and Mr. MalithRanadewa, Head of Administration, Procurement, and Government Relations of Daraz Sri Lanka.
During the meeting, Mr. Mikkelsen extended an invitation to the Government of Sri Lanka for Alibaba’s New Economy Workshop in China, which targets policymakers and regulators (barring COVID-19 restrictions). Mr. Mikkelsen and the Daraz team also highlighted key initiatives being undertaken by the company to further empower local communities including sellers, women entrepreneurs, and online shoppers.
Moreover, in line with the Government’s vision for economic revival, the Daraz team discussed their focus on building an ecosystem that will support job creation in the e-commerce industry, while creating greater accessibility for all Sri Lankans.
“We see a vast untapped e-commerce opportunity in Sri Lanka, and Daraz is committed to helping the Government realise the potential of the digital economy. Seller and consumer education, expanding financial inclusion, and activating rural communities will be some of our top focus areas in the coming years. We are delighted to work closely with the Government on these initiatives as e-commerce becomes an increasingly vital industry for the country,” said Mr. Mikkelsen.
Daraz Sri Lanka aims to host at least 100,000 active and engaged small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) selling on its platform, which in turn could translate to at least 300,000-400,000 new jobs in Sri Lanka.