The inaugural Dialogue between the Pathfinder Foundation and the Asia New Zealand Foundation was held in Colombo. The event explored several key areas of interest for Sri Lanka and New Zealand, and by extension to small states in the Asia Pacific, consequent to a renewed interest in the region by major powers and the consequential multiple challenges that small states face in dealing with the rapidly changing geopolitical situation.

The themes focused upon were: Indo-Pacific Strategic Security Dynamics: space for middle and small-sized states to shape regional order, Domestic policy reform and regionalism for prosperity and integration, New Zealand – Sri Lanka regional foreign policies, Managing bi-lateral ties with global powers in the 21st Century – approaches by New Zealand and Sri Lanka.

The Asia New Zealand Foundation participants comprised Prof. David Capie, Head of the Centre for Strategic Studies, Victoria University, Wellington; Suzannah Jessep, Director, Asia New Zealand Foundation; Dr. Manjeet Pardesi, Victoria University, Wellington, Traci Epps, Independent Trade and Law Specialist.

The Pathfinder Foundation participants included Dr. Dayaratna Silva, Executive Director, Pathfinder Foundation; Dr. Bhagya Senaratne, Department of Strategic Studies, Gen. Sir John Kotelawala University; Subashini Abeysinghe, Research Director, Verité Research; and Dr. Pavithra Jayawardena, Department of International, Colombo University.

Bernard Goonetilleke, Chairman, of the Pathfinder Foundation, made the opening remarks with Prof. David Capie, while the Sessions were alternatively chaired by Ahmed A. Jawad, Director of Pathfinder Foundation, and Prof. David Capie of Wellington University.  Michael Appleton, the High Commissioner for New Zealand, graced the occasion as a distinguished invitee.

Prof. David Capie, Head of the Centre for Strategic Studies, Bernard Goonetilleke, Chairman, Pathfinder Foundation, and Dr. Dayaratna Silva, Executive Director, of Pathfinder Foundation at the inaugural Dialogue