A joint commission established to strengthen bilateral connectivity has held “productive discussions” on the resumption of ferry services between India and Sri Lanka to boost regional trade and tourism and promote stronger people-to-people ties. India-Sri Lanka Joint Committee established under MOU on Passenger Transportation by Sea held a virtual meeting last week.
“The productive discussions focused on the resumption of ferry services between the two countries connecting mutually agreed points,” the Indian High Commission here said in a statement on Monday.
Both sides agreed that the resumption of ferry services will boost regional trade and tourism and promote stronger people-to-people ties, it said.
The meeting took place ahead of Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe’s planned visit to India later this week.
The two sides were led respectively by Rajesh Kumar Sinha, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways of the Government of India and K.D.S. Ruwanchandra, Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Aviation of the Government of Sri Lanka.
The Joint Committee identified a number of areas for mutual cooperation for the operationalisation of ferry services in the near future and desired to take further steps based on mutual understanding, the statement said.
The Joint Committee was recently reconstituted by the Governments of India and Sri Lanka as per the provisions of the bilateral Memorandum of Understanding on Passenger Transportation by Sea, signed in 2011.
The ferry services were suspended in the 80’s.
The two sides were to start a boast service in April which was later delayed as India changed the port it had chosen for the service.
Source – PTI