We, the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) - the legendry institution in the Asia Pacific region, reached another milestone on March 25, 2013 by completing 174 years of exemplary service to the business community in Sri Lanka.
When CCC was founded on March 25, 1839 under the British Rule, the Coffee industry took precedence over the current prime commodity 'Tea' which has now excelled as the leading export commodity in Sri Lanka. The agriculture based services provided by the CCC to its members, gradually elevated to value added services. Over a period of years, CCC which plays a catalytic role in the development of the business sector, changed its focus on identifying key issues to assist in the development of strategic plans to meet new challenges and opportunities. With the close rapport maintained with the Government sector, the CCC continued to strengthen its role as a channel between the Government and the Private sector.
CCC, being the first Chamber to be established in Sri Lanka, is the prime mover of the Chamber movement in Sri Lanka. It was also the first Chamber to be represented in the Senate and House of Representatives in the days of Ceylon, first to be accepted as an affiliate member of Confederation of Asia Pacific Chambers of Commerce & Industry (CACCI) in 1983. A few other services which were the first of its kind to be introduced by the CCC are the issuance of Certificates of Origin in 1925, introduction of e-Cos, Conduct of Commodity auctions (Tea, Rubber, Spices & Allied Products) from 1894, Gem Auctions in1980, services provided by Measurers/Surveyors/Assessors, Arbitration/Conciliation & Mediation services, the first Sri Lankan export exhibition was organized by the CCC in 1973, Initiated the First Export Awards scheme in association with the then Export Promotion Secretariat, Formation of Bilateral Business Councils in 1979, Launching of CSR awards in 2004, (Global Standard One) GS1 – which is the world's most accepted standard for supply chain management - bringing Bar-coding Standards to Sri Lanka and the CCC is the sole authorized body in Sri Lanka to operate the GS1 Standards system. Moreover, CCC has the unique feature of a Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Trade Associations, Regional Chambers, Employer organizations and Bilateral Business Councils in Sri Lanka. The CCC claims this status having formed alliances with 20 Regional Chambers, 38 Trade/Product and Service Associations and 21 Bilateral Business Councils.