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29 January, 2016 09:13 AM Source: Financial Times - Sri Lanka
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Group Managing Director of NWS Holdings Ltd, Viraj Malawana, has been recently appointed to the high-powered Tourism Advisory Board by Minister John Amaratunga.6

The Advisory Board is headed by business tycoon and Aitken Spence Chairman Harry Jayawardena and comprises Tourism Ministry Secretary Janaka Sugathadasa, Chairman Tourism Development Authority and Acting Chairman of the Tourism Promotions Bureau Paddy Withana, Advisor to the Ministry Felix Rodrigo, MJF Group Chairman Merrill Fernando, JKH Deputy Chairman Ajith Gunawardena, Former Unilever Sri Lanka Chairman Amal Cabraal, business tycoon Dammika Perera, tourism industry veteran Udaya Nanayakkara, tourism industry professional Sunil Dissanayake, Jetwing Travels Managing Director Shiromal Cooray, Brandix CEO Ashroff Omar, Hemas Holdings Director Abbas Eusufallly, Galle Face Hotel Group owner Sanjiv Gardiner and SriLankan Airlines CEO Suren Ratwatte.

The Advisory Board is tasked with three main duties: to advise the Minister and the institutions under the Ministry of Tourism Development on any matter connected to the development of travel and tourism; charter the future course of the industry; and respond to any matter that is put to the committee by the Minister.

Viraj Malawana is the youngest member on the Advisory Board. He and his company NWS Holdings, majority owned by Japanese investor Takashi Igarashi, have been credited for promoting Sri Lanka for tourism and investments in Japan.

NWS Holdings efforts have yielded Japanese investment in the listed Bansei Royal Resorts Hikkaduwa Plc, (in which Viraj is a Director and shareholder) as well as attracting high spending golf playing tourists from Japan. NWS Holdings has also promoted over Rs. 40 billion in Japanese investments into Sri Lanka Government Bonds via partner Bansei Securities Ltd., as well as over Rs. 12 billion investment in several companies listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange including Expolanka Holdings Plc.

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