Pakistan and Sri Lanka yesterday agreed to enhance the level of cooperation and friendship between the countries.
This agreement was reached during Bilateral Political Consultations between the Foreign Secretaries of both countries in Colombo.
Foreign Secretary Jalil Abass Jilani led the Pakistan side, while Sri Lanka was represented by Foreign Secretary Karunatilake Amunugama. The talks focused on a gamut of issues encompassing the entire spectrum of bilateral relations and the two sides had a detailed exchange of views on a number of issues of mutual interest. It was agreed that the consultations should be held on a regular basis, according to the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo.
Appreciating the significant increase in bilateral trade since the signing of the Free Trade Agreement, it was agreed that taking advantage of mechanisms in place, efforts will be made to further explore new avenues of businesses and diversify the relation to include investments and services sector as well in future.
In addition to the existing fully-funded scholarships Pakistan offers to the Sri Lankan students in medicine, engineering, pharmacy and dentistry, the Pakistan Foreign Secretary offered scholarships to Sri Lankan students in prestigious agricultural institutes of Pakistan.
Following the talks, the two Foreign Secretaries signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute of International Relations and Strategic Studies (LKIIRSS) and the Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSL).
Earlier in the day, the Pakistani Foreign Secretary and his delegation paid a courtesy call on President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat. During the meeting, Pakistani Foreign Secretary conveyed greetings and best wishes from Pakistanís President Asif Ali Zardari.