Oct 07, Colombo: Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades has expressed his intention to attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to be held in November in Sri Lanka.
President Anastasiades has told Sri Lanka's External Affairs Minister said Professor G.L. Peiris that he himself is looking forward to attending the Summit in Colombo when the Sri Lankan Minister called on the Cyprus President at the Presidential Palace in Nicosia on Friday.
Welcoming the Sri Lankan Minister, President Anastasiades has said that the Minister's visit has special significance at a time when Sri Lanka and Cyprus are celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations.
Minister Peiris has briefed President Anastasiades on Sri Lanka's progress with regard to development and reconciliation.
Minister Peiris during bilateral discussions with his Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides, has agreed on immediate steps for the establishment of a mechanism for regular bilateral consultations between the two Foreign Ministries with a view to identifying areas for further co-operation.
The two sides have agreed to have a series of agreements on areas such as avoidance of double taxation and air services, ready for signing when Foreign Minister Kasoulides accompanies President Anastasiades to Colombo for the Commonwealth Summit.
The Government of Cyprus has also showed great interest in arranging for business leaders from Cyprus to attend the Business Forum, to be held on the sidelines of CHOGM. The Ministers noting that Cyprus Airways used to fly twice a week to Colombo between 2002 and 2004 have agreed to expand the scope of collaboration between the two countries in the tourism sector.
Among the other issues discussed was Sri Lanka's relationship with the European Union, with particular reference to the revival of the Joint Commission mechanism, the upcoming meetings at official level and the contemplated trajectory of relations in the near future, the Ministry said.