HNB hosts certification ceremony for food industry professionals

In a significant step towards bolstering food safety standards and strengthening the export sector, Sri
Lanka’s leading private sector bank HNB PLC, recently hosted a certification ceremony for
participants of the Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) Training Course.
The certification ceremony hosted by HNB marks a significant stride towards not only meeting
regulatory requirements but also elevating Sri Lanka’s export reputation. This specialized training
program, held in partnership with The National Chamber of Exporters of Sri Lanka (NCE), is
designed to equip individuals with the expertise needed to implement preventive controls in the
food industry. The certification is not only a regulatory requirement but also a testament to Sri
Lanka’s commitment to quality and safety in food exports.
The collaboration between HNB and NCE reflects their joint commitment to supporting the Sri
Lankan economy, particularly the specific needs of businesses in the export sector. NCE, as the
exclusive chamber promoting exporters in Sri Lanka, finds a natural ally in HNB, through their
offers a comprehensive suite of financial products and services tailored to exporters.
“As a bank that is firmly committed to fostering the growth of businesses in the export sector, we
recognise that the industry goes beyond just generating foreign currency. They also play a pivotal
role in nurturing the human development potential in the country as they are compelled to ensure
Sri Lankan products are manufactured to globally accepted standards,” HNB Wholesale Banking
Group Deputy General Manager Damith Pallewatte said, underlining the importance of certifications
in adding value and enhancing quality.
Commenting on the essential role of quality certifications in global certifications NCE President
Jayantha Karunaratne said: “Certifications are key to establish Sri Lanka as a formidable player in
international markets and contribute towards our vision of becoming an export-oriented economy.”
Reiterating the significance of the partnership between HNB and NCE, CEO/Secretary General of
the Chamber Shiham Marikar emphasized the importance of value addition over bulk exports,
reflecting a growing trend in international trade.
The PCQI Training Course has gained prominence due to its relevance under the Food Safety
Modernization Act (FSMA), a pivotal piece of food safety legislation in the United States. This
legislation mandates that certain personnel involved in food production, processing, and handling be
PCQI certified to ensure the safety of food products intended for the U.S. market.

The certification is mandatory for companies exporting to the U.S. market in compliance with the
U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
With 254 customer centres and 800+ Self Service Devices (SSDs) nationwide, HNB is one of Sri
Lanka’s largest, most technologically innovative private banks. Consolidating its legacy in
sustainability, good governance and corporate excellence, HNB was crowned the Best Corporate
Citizen for 2022 at the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Best Corporate Citizen Awards. The bank
further secured four additional accolades, including being ranked among the Top 10 Best Corporate
Citizens and taking home the Governance category and Sustainability Champion for the Finance
sector titles.
Additionally, HNB was ranked among the World’s Top 1,000 Banks list compiled by the prestigious
UK-based Banker Magazine for the sixth consecutive year in 2022, in addition to being crowned the
Best Retail Bank in Sri Lanka for the 13th occasion at the prestigious International Excellence in
Retail Financial Services Awards 2023 hosted by the Asian Banker Magazine.

Jayantha Karunaratne, NCE President (Seated, fourth from left), Damith Pallewatte – HNB Deputy
General Manager, Wholesale Banking Group (Seated, center) and Shiham Marikar, NCE
CEO/Secretary General (Seated, fourth from right) along with the programme participants.

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