Maria Fernanda Garza, the first female Chair of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), which is the largest and most influential business organisation globally and represents 170 countries with a corporate membership of 45 million companies, has arrived in Sri Lanka last evening (18).

Her first visit to Sri Lanka will reportedly encompass meetings with business and government leaders, a press release said.

Greeting her at the Bandaranaike International Airport was the Chairman, of ICC Sri Lanka, Anthony M Shanil Fernando, the Secretary Hemakumara Gunasekera and the Treasurer Manisha Rajanayake.  

ICC Sri Lanka plays a significant role in trade and investment, Arbitration, and facilitation in Sri Lanka,  through its ten specialised committees that speak with authority on behalf of enterprises from all sectors present in the country including Banking, Insurance, Training and Education, Finance, International Relations and Tourism and the Agriculture, SME support, Entrepreneurship development, the release added.  

The Agriculture Policy and Food Safety and Supply Chain Committee, launched in 2021, aims to provide support to companies in the sector to help them navigate pressing challenges to food security.

ICC also provides a platform for engagement, in Governance, Sustainability anti-corruption and advocacy in best practices.  ICC Banking committee which meets monthly and is represented by all the Banks operating in Sri Lanka, meets quarterly with Sri Lanka Customs to accelerate trade facilitation.

The ICC International Chair hails from Mexico. Maria Fernanda is the CEO of Orestia, a manufacturing home improvement solutions company based in Mexico and exports to the USMCA region, Latin America, and Asia. Throughout her career, Ms. Garza has been a dedicated advocate for small and medium-sized businesses, with a strong track record of involvement in the Mexican Employers’ Association and a four-year tenure as Vice President.