|Pakistan PM seeks
stronger ties with Sri Lanka
and Sri Lanka are two important countries of South Asia and
they look forward to further strengthen their multifaceted
relations, said the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Syed Yusuf
Raza Gilani during a call on him at Prime Minister’s House
by the Foreign Minister of Sri Lanka, Prof. G. L. Peiris.
The Prime Minister encouraged Sri Lanka to move forward on
negotiations with Pakistan on Comprehensive Economic
Partnership Agreement (CEPA) and welcomed a meeting in this
context between the countries in August in Colombo.
Prof. Peiris is on a two-day visit to Pakistan as an envoy
of the President of Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka has greatly suffered due to terrorism and so has
Pakistan. The countries of the region should remain
committed to get rid of this menace just as Sri Lanka has
done, observed the Pakistani premier, while expressing
satisfaction at the resolve of both Pakistan and India to
continue with their bilateral dialogue, and not get deterred
by terrorists’ designs to derail the dialogue once again.
Pakistan has strongly condemned the recent terrorist attack
The Prime Minister placed great emphasis on peace in the
region and said that Pakistan wants to maintain friendly
relations with all its neighbours including India, Iran and
Afghanistan. He stated that stability in Afghanistan is most
important. Pakistan supports an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned
process of reconciliation in their country.
Pakistan looks forward to receiving the President of Sri
Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa in November this year. Together
with President Zardari’s visit to Sri Lank last year, such
high level visits would contribute to strengthen bilateral
relationship between the countries, the Prime Minister said.
He also called for further expansion of trade and commercial
relations. He observed that it was important to hold regular
meeting of the Joint Economic Commission that met last week
after a gap of six years. He emphasized that the two
countries should cooperate with each other in the fields of
education, particularly training of nurses and teachers.
Collaboration between them in such sectors as cement, sugar,
pharmaceuticals and gems and jewellery would add a broader
dimension to their relationship. Prime Minister Gilani also
offered to assist Sri Lanka in the preparations for hosting
the Asian Games.
Prof. Pieris, briefed the Prime Minister on his Sri Lanka’s
campaign against terrorism during the last 30 years and the
current process of reconciliation, revival of leadership,
reconstruction of infrastructure as Sri Lanka’s priorities
after its success in rooting out terrorism from the country.
He agreed with the Prime Minister on the priority areas for
bilateral cooperation. A soft term credit loan from Pakistan
would enable Sri Lanka to forge cooperation in these
sectors. The Prime Minister advised the Foreign Minister to
have in-depth meetings during his stay in Pakistan with
Chairman, Board of Investment as well as the Chambers of
Commerce and Industry in Karachi. The two countries need to
forge a strong economic partnership in order to realize
their great potential in various areas and sectors, he
|Training in India under Colombo Plan
|The Government of India is offering 40 slots to Sri
Lanka during 2011-12 (upto 31st March 2012) for training in
India under the Technical Cooperation Scheme (TCS) of
The TCS of Colombo Plan was started with a view to providing
technical assistance to neighboring Colombo Plan countries.
Through this Scheme, Government of India provides a
comprehensive and integrated training to participants from
member countries of Colombo Plan with the purpose of
assisting them to enhance their administrative and technical
capabilities through human resource development. The
programme covers diverse areas, including IT, management,
mass communication, finance, rural development, railways,
remote sensing, parliamentary studies, public administration
and management, banking, rural development, etc.
This year, 35 institutes in both public and private sectors,
which are leading centers of learning in their fields of
specialisation, are offering 195 courses, both short term
and long term, in the area of relevance and interest to
Under the scheme, the Government of India provides the
entire cost for training including the return airfare,
tuition fees, accommodation, emergency medical treatment,
living allowance, book allowances and study tour.
Nominations for different courses may be forwarded in the
prescribed application form, along with copy of supporting
documents to the High Commission of India through Department
of External Resources, Ministry of Finance & Planning, The
Secretariat, 3rd Floor, Colombo- 1 www.erd.gov.lk. For more
information regarding the institutes, courses and
downloading application form, log on to www.hcicolombo.org
and go to the section India-Sri Lanka Relations - Education
|US embassy programme to support
Lankan, Maldivian youth
|The U.S. Embassy in Colombo announces the Youth
Empowerment Grants Programme to fund projects for Sri Lankan
and Maldivian youth. The main objective of the grant program
is to support innovative, small-scale, cutting-edge projects
developed and implemented by and/or for young people between
the ages of 15-25 in the areas of educational development,
environment issues, community development, civil society
building, human rights, youth enrichment activities, health
and human services and employability.
The competition is open to Non-Governmental Organizations
registered in Sri Lanka or Maldives. The maximum award
amount is one million rupees or 125,000 rufiyaa. The
application form and further information can be found on the
U.S. Embassy’s website at <
Completed applications must be submitted to the U.S. Embassy
by August 15, 2011.
ON ‘MOTHER SRI LANKA’
The book documenting the progress achieved under the
‘Mother Sri Lanka’ programme was presented to President
Mahinda Rajapaksa by its president Janaki Kuruppu on Friday
at the Temple Trees. Mother Sri Lanka’ programme had
undertaken a number of projects to build a healthy
relationship between the children of the South and the
North. The projects, conducted during the last three years
with the objective of nurturing a generation that loves the
motherland, were launched in 2,600 schools involving three
|Dehiwala pacyderms to dance again!
|The elephants at the Dehiwala Zoo are to to dance again.
According to the Director of the National Zoological
Gardens, H. Senanka Gunaratne, the dances will take place
every day except on Mondays and Tuesdays.
The elephant dances at the Dehiwala Zoo came to a standstill
during the past few days. According to the Director, the
dances had to be stopped as one of the pacyderms, Indu, had
Their act is one of the most popular among the visitors to
|Dinesh attends World Water Week
Minister of Water Supply and Drainage has said that he had
the opportunity of learning and exchanging views about vast
technological developments made on water supply and hygiene
at the World Water Week held in Singapore.
The conference was held from July 4 to 6 with the
participation of world leaders, ministers and business
leaders connected with water supply from Malaysia, India,
Brunei, Cambodia, Angola, Congo, Mauritius and many other
countries under the theme ‘Sustainable Solution to Water
Supply in Changing Environment’.
The participants exceeding 15,000 could observe the most
modern technological developments on water supply and
hygiene at the exhibition held along with the conference.
The minister points out that Singapore is a role model to
the world to follow with regard to the conservation of water
where 100 per cent of rain water is used for consumption
The use of recycled rain water, desalination of sea water,
signing of agreement to outsource water from Malaysia are
some measures taken by Singapore to ensure water supply the