Defusing tension in the Indian Ocean, economic development, further strengthening of trade links between the two countries, issues related to plundering of fishery resources of the northern seabed of Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka’s successful handling of Covid-19 pandemic and cultural and religious ties were the main focus of the summit held between Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, via a video link, Mass Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said.
Minister Rambukwella addressing the media last morning, told reporters that Prime Minister Modi commended Premier Rajapaksa for Sri Lanka’s successful fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and added Sri Lanka’s success against the viral infection was based on a vision of mutual support and would assist other countries in the region.
Both leaders agreed that the current situation presented a fresh opportunity to give added impetus to bilateral relations. They expressed happiness that India and Sri Lanka worked very closely in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, he said.
They also agreed to broad base the island wide engagement under the Memorandum of Understanding for Implementation of High Impact Community Development Projects (HICDP) for the period 2020-2025 and work together to expeditiously complete construction of 10,000 housing units in the plantation areas.
The two leaders agreed to further strengthen cooperation in renewable energy with particular emphasis on solar projects under the US$ 100 million Line of Credit from India and technical cooperation in the areas of agriculture, animal husbandry, science and technology, health care and AYUSH as well as skill development by increased training of professionals, Minister Rambukwella said.
India will facilitate the visit of a delegation of Buddhist pilgrims from Sri Lanka to the sacred city of Kushinagar, which has recently been announced as an International Airport recognising its significance in Buddhism. (Sandun A. Jayasekera)