8.Disclosing the Contribution of Arabs for the Sri Lankan Economy: A Historical Approach

  • Mr. HLM. Mohideen Ph.D. Research Scholar, Department of Arabic, Jamal Mohamed College (Autonomous) Affiliated to Bharathidasan University, Tiruchirappalli
Keywords: Arabs, Arabic Language, Sri Lanka, Economy, Contribution


Sri Lanka, an island nation in the Indian Ocean, with a dual capital system and a rich 3,000-year history, played a key role in trade routes. It gained independence from British colonial rule in 1948 and became a republic in 1972. After a 30-year civil war ending in 2009, Sri Lanka has advanced in development and international affiliations, with a diverse population and significant Muslim representation. Sri Lanka's historical importance lies in the transoceanic East-West trade route, attracting early Arabian visitors. Arab arrivals in Sri Lanka predate European colonization; the Arabs didn't exploit resources but contributed to its enrichment, influencing the island's contemporary economic progress, with Middle Eastern nations playing a significant role.

This study tries to document the historical presence and activities of Arabs in Sri Lanka across epochs, quantify their economic impact on trade and finance, and examine their cultural and socioeconomic influence, including contributions to cultural exchanges, religious diffusion, and improvements in infrastructure and living standards within Sri Lanka. The researcher used descriptive and analytical methods to complete this study. To meet the objectives of the study, the primary and secondary data were used with qualitative and quantitative approaches. This study highlights the enduring historical and contemporary ties between Islam in Sri Lanka and Arab merchants. It underscores their substantial contributions to both the island's culture and economy, emphasizing the significance of recognizing and nurturing these connections for mutual understanding and continued economic growth.

How to Cite
Mr. HLM. Mohideen. “8.Disclosing the Contribution of Arabs for the Sri Lankan Economy: A Historical Approach”. Al-Bukhari Journal of Arabic and Islamic Studies, Vol. 3, no. 2, Jan. 2024, http://www.albukharijournal.in/index.php/abjais/article/view/118.