(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –Leaders of Sri Lanka and Myanmar agreed to further strengthen the economic and trade relations between the two countries with a new approach while activating the Sri Lanka- Myanmar Joint Trade Agreement.
These remarks were made when President Maithripala Sirisena, who is in Nepal to attend the 4th Summit of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multisectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), met with President of Myanmar Win Myint in Kathmandu, today (30).
In 1999 Sri Lanka and Myanmar entered into this agreement to ease the trade activities between the two countries. Both leaders paid their attention to further strengthen the long standing bilateral relations between the two countries.
President Maithripala Sirisena pointed out that there are many similarities in Sri Lanka and Myanmar with both countries are being nourished with Theravada Buddhist philosophy and the economies of the two countries based on agriculture and said that this strong relationship between the countries could be easily built up.
President Sirisena appreciated the steps taken by the President of Myanmar to strengthen democracy and further said that Sri Lanka, as a true friend of Myanmar, is ready to provide any assistance in international forums.
President Sirisena recalled about the programme of Aung San Suu Kyi who was a democratic leader and brought back memories of how he met her in the year of 2016. President Sirisena, referring to the program conducted to strengthen democracy said that he considered that it is one of his main duties to strengthen reconciliation and not to provide any space for an eruption of war again in the country.
The President who was thankful to the President of Myanmar about the steps taken to give a baby elephant to the country in the year of 2015 after an appeal was made by him as the President, said that he named the baby elephant as “Pulatisi Raja” and offered it to the Dalada Maligawa which is the most sacred religious symbol of the country and requested the Mynamar President to see the elephant when he visit Sri Lanka.
President of Myanmar said that he is expecting to visit Sri Lanka as soon as possible. He referred to the strong bilateral ties shared between the two countries and expressed appreciation for the continuous asstiance provided to Myanmar by Sri Lanka. Both leaders discussed about how to uplift the cooperation in the fields of agriculture as two agriculture-based nations.
Myanmar President who appreciated the program conducted by the Sri Lankan President to strengthen democracy and to make Sri Lanka a free and prosperous nation, assured that Myanmar would always be ready to give assistance to Sri Lanka at any time it is needed.