Home » Russia pledges to further foster friendly relations with Sri Lanka

Russia pledges to further foster friendly relations with Sri Lanka


Russia has pledged to further develop traditionally friendly relations with Sri Lanka while fostering constructive bilateral cooperation in various spheres for the benefit of peoples of the two countries.

This pledge was given by Russian President Vladimir Putin in a congratulatory message to newly appointed Sri Lanka President Ranil Wickremasinghe.

Russian President Putin says he is counting on President Ranil Wickremesinghe to develop relations between Russia and Sri Lanka.

He noted that the relationship between Russia and Sri Lanka are of traditionally friendly nature.

He expressed the belief that the two countries will work for the strengthening of regional stability and security.

President Putin’s message was conveyed by Russia’s Ambassador to Sri Lanka Yury Materiy when he called on President Ranil Wickremesinghe recently.

Achieving a trade turnover of $700 million in the coming years was set as a high-priority goal, as the countries intensified the work of the Intergovernmental Russian-Sri Lankan Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation.

It is noteworthy that the bilateral partnership has a developed legal framework – there are agreements on cooperation in the field of fisheries, science, technology and innovation, as well as tourism, culture, and space exploration.

At the moment, the planned indicator of the volume of trade turnover has not yet been reached – according to the results of 2020 it amounted to $492 million; promisingly, this is a quarter higher than a year earlier.

Almost half of Russian exports consist of machinery and equipment, while up to a third are cereals, mainly wheat.

Until 2018, Sri Lanka was one of the world’s leading buyers of Russian chrysotile asbestos, used in construction. However, the government of the country has decided to completely abandon the use of this material by 2029, and the volume of purchases has decreased significantly.

The Emerald Island supplies Russia mainly with tea, which accounts for half of its imports, as well as textiles and knitwear (40%).

An intergovernmental agreement on cooperation and mutual assistance in customs matters is being prepared for signing.

At the meeting of the co-chairs the intergovernmental commission in June 2021 noted the prospects for cooperation on the peaceful use of nuclear energy, including the construction of nuclear power plants, as well as the use of nuclear technology in medicine and agriculture.

In the interest of ensuring the energy security of the island, Russia also intends to increase the supply of coal and petroleum products, and cooperation in the hydropower industry is also planned in the future.

There is potential in the civil aviation, construction, chemical and pharmaceutical industries.

An important area of bilateral cooperation is tourism. In the pre-Covid times, the unique natural and historical sights of the Emerald Isle rightfully won the love of Russian tourists.

In 2020, due to the restrictions imposed, only 49,000 Russians were able to visit Sri Lanka, but as a result of the easing of the quarantine regime and the restoration of air traffic, the prospects for doubling the number of visitors have opened up for today.


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