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(2013-08-23) Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister, Prof.G.L. Peiris, on a 2-day visit to Pakistan, met with the Advisor to the Prime Minister on National Security & Foreign Affairs today. The Advisor hosted a lunch for the visiting dignitary. The two leaders discussed a wide gamut of bilateral, regional and multilateral issues including cooperation in SAARC and the Commonwealth.

Both the Advisor and Sri Lankan Minister agreed that the bilateral trade did not reflect the close and cordial relations that exist between the two countries and there was a need to enhance economic cooperation. Both sides agreed that the meeting of the next Joint Economic Commission (JEC) would be held in October this year in Colombo. The exact dates would be finalized soon. Meeting of the JEC would go a long way in proposing ways and means of enhancing trade between the two countries.

The Sri Lankan External Affairs Minister stressed the importance of strengthening SAARC and sharing best practices within the region. He believed that there was a lot of potential and expertise in SAARC which needed to be strengthened in different fields such as economic and social cooperation, poverty alleviation, human rights and academic exchanges.

As regards, cooperation in the Commonwealth, Minister Peiris stated that Sri Lanka would extend its support for Pakistan’s candidature to the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG).

August 23, 2013

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