July 13, Colombo: Sri Lanka and the Kingdom of Thailand agreed on the need to further strengthen the bilateral relations between the two countries when the leaders of the two countries met in Colombo on Thursday.
Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena officially welcomed the visiting Prime Minister of Thailand, General Prayut Chan-o-cha at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday with an official guard of honor and a gun salute.
During a lengthy meeting the two leaders discussed a range of matters of mutual interest to further develop and strengthen the trade and technical cooperation between the two countries.
Thailand Prime Minister had expressed his happiness over the increasing trade and economic cooperation between the two countries and added that this should further enhance in the future. He also promised to look into the possibility of purchasing more tea from Sri Lanka.
President Sirisena appreciated the progress made by Thailand in the agricultural and technical sectors and requested to provide assistance to develop these sectors in Sri Lanka too. General Prayut Chan-o-cha acceded to this request and said he will take the necessary actions speedily in the near future.
The two leaders had also discussed about long standing religious and cultural ties and tourism as well as to exchange views on regional issues. The Thailand Prime Minister also invited President Sirisena to visit his country again to further enhance friendly ties.
Bilateral talks between President Sirisena and Prime Minister Chan-o-cha were followed by the signing of instruments in strategic economic partnership, technological collaboration, sustainable community development and transfer of offenders.
Both leaders witnessed the signing of the four MoUs -a treaty between Thailand and Sri Lanka on the Transfer of Offenders and on Co-operation in the Enforcement of Penal Sentences, MoU on Strategic Economic Partnership between the two governments, MoU on understanding between Ministry of Social Welfare and Primary Industries and Kasetsart University on Technological Collaboration Related to Value Addition of Primary Products and a Joint Action Programme for Cooperation on Sustainable Community Development Model based on the Application on Sufficiency Economy Philosophy in Sri Lanka.
The Thailand Prime Minister is visiting Sri Lanka on an invitation extended by President Sirisena. This is his first visit to the island nation.
"This visit will be a milestone in Thailand - Sri Lanka relations as Sri Lanka is a strategic country located at the heart of the Indian Ocean and the crossroads of routes under the "Belt and Road Initiative" and "Indo - Pacific" strategies," Thai Foreign Affairs Ministry said in a statement prior to Premier Chan-o-cha's visit.
The Prime Minister is accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs Don Pramudwinai, Minister Attached to the Prime Minister's Office Kobsak Pootrakool, Deputy Minister of Commerce Ms. Chutima Bunyapraphasara, and senior officials from relevant Ministries.