15 Feb, New Delhi
Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena arrived in New Delhi Sunday evening on a four-day visit to India. This is the Sri Lankan President’s maiden foreign trip after he assumed charge last month.
He will be accorded a ceremonial welcome in the Rashtrapati Bhawan tomorrow- Monday . Sirisena will meet President Pranab Mukherjee, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj tomorrow.
Uupon taking charge as the Sri Lankan President last month, Sirisena had indicated that he wants to have closer relations with India. During his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the 63-year-old leader will hold delegation level talks on key issues, including peace and reconciliation process in Sri Lanka.
India and Sri Lanka enjoy a robust trade and investment relationship , with bilateral trade growing rapidly in the last decade. Sri Lanka is now one of India’s largest trade partner in South Asia, while India is Sri Lanka’s largest trade partner globally.
Trade between the two countries has grown rapidly from a modest 600 million US dollars in 2000, to reach 3.7 billion US dollars in 2013. India continues to be the largest source country as far as FDI and tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka are concerned.
At the end of his official leg of the visit, the Sri Lankan President will travel to Buddhist pilgrimage site Bodh Gaya and Tirupati on Tuesday.