High Commission of Sri Lanka in India

Second Sri Lanka – UK Strategic Dialogue held in Colombo PDF Print option in slimbox / lytebox? (info) E-mail
Wednesday, 08 May 2024 00:00

The Second Sri Lanka - UK Strategic Dialogue was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on 07 May 2024. The Sri Lanka delegation at the meeting was led by Director General / Europe and North America Shobini Gunasekera and the UK side by Director / India and Indian Ocean Directorate at the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) Ben Mellor.  Discussions were also held with Foreign Secretary Aruni Wijewardane.


During the discussions the delegations acknowledged the cordial ties over 75 years of diplomatic relations and the regular exchange of high level visits.    The two delegations exchanged views on foreign and security policy priorities in the context of evolving dynamics in the global stage, and mutual commitment to multilateralism.  Discussion also focused on ongoing economic cooperation.  Views were also exchanged on ways to maximise trade under the concessional trade facility -the Developing Country Trading System (DCTS), including by expanding the export basket, with further assistance and collaboration from UK. Both sides acknowledged the growth observed in tourism between the two countries and the need for expanding   Sri Lankan Airlines operations to the UK.  


The two delegations also exchanged views on climate change and environmental policies and further collaborate in this area. Sri Lanka appreciated UK’s collaboration through the Ocean Country Partnership Programme, which aims to strengthen marine science expertise in the country. Sri Lanka briefed on the Offshore Wind Roadmap, and views were exchanged on potential collaboration in this area with the expertise of the UK.


Both delegations exchanged views on the need for facilitating legal migration channels, including in the healthcare sector. Views were also exchanged on expansion of maritime cooperation focusing on the early conclusion of an MOU on Cooperation between the Hydrographic Offices of the two countries.  Opportunities for collaboration in education and Cooperation at international fora, particularly at the UN, Commonwealth and IORA were also discussed.


British High Commissioner Andrew Patrick and senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and several government agencies also participated.  The next Dialogue will be held in 2025.


Ministry of Foreign Affairs



07 May 2024