In a congratulatory message to the newly appointed Prime Minister of Nepal Sher Bahadur Deuba, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa described Sri Lanka and Nepal as ‘true friends’ who draw their strength from “multifaceted civilizational linkages and entrenched fellowship”. Prime Minister Rajapaksa further recalled the enduring engagement between the two countries anchored in mutual respect and solidarity and fostered by close cooperation, including on matters of global and regional importance.

The message was handed over by Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Nepal Himalee Arunatilaka during a courtesy call on Prime Minister Deuba on Monday 26 July.

Prime Minister Deuba thanked his Sri Lankan counterpart for the warm congratulations expressed and recalled Sri Lanka’s continuing engagement with Nepal, and the close cultural links, particularly with Lumbini. He also appreciated the cooperation between Nepal and Sri Lanka within regional and multilateral fora.

The ongoing efforts to consolidate age old cultural links through enhanced economic cooperation and trade were also discussed. Ambassador Arunatilaka underlined recent economic initiatives, including virtual interactions between Sri Lankan and Nepali business communities towards building collaborative partnerships in business and trade.

She noted that the year 2022 marks the 65th anniversary of diplomatic relations and expressed the hope that ongoing discussions to commence direct flights between the two capitals can be concluded soon, as that would greatly enhance trade and tourism as well as educational, health and business linkages.

Joint Secretary, South Asia Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Nepal Tirtharaj Wagle, and Counsellor of Sri Lanka Embassy Nilusha Dilmini were also associated at the meeting.

Source – Embassy of Sri Lanka Kathmandu / 29 July, 2021