Colombo, March 15 (NIA) – South Korea, on Wednesday announced that it would increase its economic corporation to Sri Lanka from 300 million dollars to 500 million dollars over the next three years.
South Korea’s Foreign Minister, Yun Byung-se, who arrived in Sri Lanka on Wednesday, held bilateral discussions with his Sri Lankan counterpart Mangala Samaraweera during which both sides agreed to further strengthen ties in several areas.
Samaraweera said that the Korean Minister’s visit was historic and timely as it was the first time a South Korean Foreign Minister was visiting Sri Lanka in 31 years.
Addressing the media after successful discussions, Samaraweera said that the governments of the Republic of Korea and Sri Lanka had agreed to further strengthen ties in trade and investments as well as economic corporation, development corporation, labour relations, political relations and defence and cultural corporation.
Samaraweera also expressed his government’s deep appreciation at the announcement by the Republic of Korea to increase its economic corporation to Sri Lanka from 300 million dollars to 500 million dollars within the next three years.
“I appreciate the financial assistance given to us by the Republic of Korea,” Samaraweera said.
“I am confident that the visit by the Minister will further enhance the relations between our two countries and pave the way for stronger ties in all spheres of corporation,” he added.
During the bilateral discussions held at the Foreign Ministry, Samaraweera said that both sides had also discussed the situation in the Korean peninsula and regional security issues.
Sri Lanka took the opportunity to call upon the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) to abide by its international obligations ensuring a conducive environment for peace and security in the Korean region.
Samaraweera further briefed the South Korean Minister on Sri Lanka’s progress on reconciliation and said it welcomed early policy consultations between the two foreign ministries which would be held in Colombo during the course of this year.
Minister Yun, speaking to the press said South Korea had agreed to facilitate Korean companies in larger scale infra structure projects in Sri Lanka so that it would help Sri Lanka’s nation rebuilding efforts.
He said his government appreciated the firm stand taken by the Sri Lankan government especially regarding North Korea’s international obligations.
“We also expect close corporation with Sri Lanka on many areas on the regional and international level to safeguard the peace and stability of the international community,” Yun said.
Yun further said the two countries were also planning to hold several commemorative events to mark the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations this year and would also facilitate the exchange of high level visits this year and the coming years.
Yun also announced that his government would hand over a sum of 200,000 dollars to Sri Lanka as humanitarian aid for Sri Lanka’s ongoing drought situation.
During his visit in Sri Lanka, Yun is also expected to hold discussions with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and President Maithripala Sirisena.