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Study UK/English UK Outward Mission to Sri Lanka

2 March 2010

Study UK and English UK jointly organised a small-scale mission to Sri Lanka in cooperation with UK Trade & Investment. The mission took place on 9-10 February, and followed a scoping visit undertaken by English UK in November 2009, which identified significant opportunities for private colleges in the Sri Lankan market.

Day one of the mission focused on understanding the Sri Lankan market. In the morning, delegates were briefed by Tim Davies, UKBA Entry Clearance Officer, and Janet Ford, the Head of Trade & Investment at the British High Commission. The group then headed to the British Council to discuss opportunities in the education sector more specifically.

A networking lunch was then held with 5 selected government officials, and this was followed by meetings with the Sri Lankan Board of Investment to find out more about government incentives for private education providers wanting to set up in Sri Lanka.

In the evening, a reception was hosted by the British Ambassador, Peter Hayes, at his residence. Approximately 50 people attended from both government and industry, and this proved an excellent networking opportunity.

On the second day of the mission, the focus shifted to doing business. Delegates met with about 15-20 companies which included agents promoting organisations locally to students wishing to go abroad, and organisations delivering courses locally looking for joint venture partners.

Following the mission, Brink Gardner from Blake Hall College said, "I was personally overwhelmed by the response and the number of institutions wanting to work with us in partnership or collaboration. From a personal perspective, I can assure you that it has been more than fruitful."

Study UK hopes to organise more outward missions for members in the future. A report on this mission and the opportunities identified will be uploaded to the members' area of the Study UK website shortly.

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One on one meetings with local partners
Reception at the Ambassador's residence
Farewell dinner