15 September, New Delhi
India and Sri Lanka today held extensive talks on fishermen issue, ensuring justice to Tamils and ways to deepen trade and defence engagements. Both the countries resolved to intensify cooperation in combating terror.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Sri Lankan counterpart Ranil Wickremesinghe, after their delegation level talks in New Delhi, said the two countries are determined to take the relationship to the next level. The two sides also signed four agreements to deepen cooperation in health care and space science.
In a joint press statement, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, the Island nation is India’s largest partner in defence training programme and both will continue to expand cooperation in the area.
On the fishermen’s issue, the Prime Minister said fishermen’s associations on both sides should continue their efforts to find a solution.
Thanking Wickremesinghe for choosing India for his first overseas trip after becoming Prime Minister for the fourth term, the Prime Minister hoped that the country will achieve genuine reconciliation and development.
Assuring India’s unwavering support to Sri Lanka, Mr Modi sought support for Indian investors in the economic development of the island nation in different sectors particularly in infrastructure, energy and transport.
Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said his government is looking at devolution of power to ethnic Tamils under the provisions of the Constitution.
He pitched for deeper economic engagement with India and hoped that both countries will be able to finalise the long-pending Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement by next year. He said enhancing bilateral trade with India would help his country reach the goal of generating one million jobs in Sri Lanka over the next five years.