PH, Sri Lanka Discuss Ways to Deepen Ties as Manila Hosts Political Consultations
MANILA 31 October 2018 — The Philippines and Sri Lanka successfully convened their Second Political Consultations in Manila, agreeing to deepen and broaden Philippines-Sri Lanka relations in the areas of trade and investment, defense, education, tourism, labor migration, agriculture, and mutual legal assistance.
In the consultations that were co-chaired by Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Policy Enrique A. Manalo, and Additional Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka Sumith Nakandala, new areas of cooperation were also explored, including training for health service providers in disaster response, technical cooperation in nursing, and sister-city agreements between local government units.
The Philippines and Sri Lanka also exchanged views on regional developments in Asia, as well as in ASEAN-related topics including ASEAN-Sri Lanka relations, Sri Lanka’s desire to become a sectoral dialogue partner, the highlights and accomplishments of the Philippines’ 2017 ASEAN chairmanship, and the forthcoming 33rd ASEAN Summit in Singapore.
The Philippine delegation is composed of officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs including Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Meynardo L.B. Montealegre, Non-Resident Ambassador to Sri Lanka Vicente Vivencio T. Bandillo, DFA Office of Asia-Pacific Affairs Executive Director Josel F. Ignacio, and DFA Economic Diplomacy Unit Director Edgar Tomas Auxilian.
Officials from the department of trade and Industry, Department of Health, Department of Interior and Local Government, Department of Justice, and Philippine Overseas Employment Administration make up the rest of the Philippine delegation.
Meanwhile, the Sri Lankan delegation is composed of Sri Lankan Ambassador to the Philippines Aruni Ranaraja, Sri Lankan Foreign Affairs Ministry East Asia and Pacific Affairs Director K.K.Yoganaadan, and Sri Lankan Embassy Second Secretary Sewwandi De Silva.
The Philippines and Sri Lanka launched the political consultations mechanism on 21 November 2016 in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The second meeting in Manila comes as the Philippines and Sri Lanka look forward to celebrating 58 years of formal diplomatic relations on 11 January 2019, with high-level visits and other commemorative activities under consideration.
The next round of political consultations will be held in Sri Lanka. END