Local News from Sri Lanka: Ambassador-designate to Belgium Grace Asirwatham met with the Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belgium, Bruno van der Pluijm on 28 August 2019 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Brussels.
The Ambassador-designate expressed the desire to further strengthen bilateral relations and it was agreed that Bilateral Consultations between the two Ministries of Foreign Affairs should commence early next year to identify areas for closer cooperation.
The Belgium Foreign Secretary noted that trade, investment and tourism from Belgium was on a positive trajectory. Total trade last year amounted to USD 553 million. He indicated that Belgium had also supported Sri Lanka as a development partner through grant and soft loan assistance for several development projects last year including the Kolonna – Balangoda and Monaragala – Buttala Water Supply projects and the construction of 13 steel railway bridges project and would continue to extend development assistance. Both countries attach priority to economic diplomacy and there are prospects for further growth in trade and investment.
The Belgium Foreign Secretary stated that a high level visit from Belgium to Sri Lanka with a view to further strengthening the longstanding ties between the two countries could take place next year.a