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Bilateral Relations between the Republic of Belarus and the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

Diplomatic relations between the Republic of Belarus and the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka were established on November 20, 2000.

In 2004, the Honorary Consulate of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka was opened in the Republic of Belarus.
On December 20, 2012, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Belarus to the Republic of India and the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka (concurrently) H.E. Mr. Vitaly A. Prima presented his credentials to the President of Sri Lanka H.E. Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa.
In August 2013, Mr. Joel Selvanayagam, the Head of the company “Hovael Construction (Private) Limited”, was appointed the Honorary Consul of the Republic of Belarus in Sri Lanka.
On August 25-27, 2013, the first official visit of the President of Sri Lanka H.E. Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa to the Republic of Belarus took place.
November 17-21, 2014, Sri Lanka was visited by the Belarusian Parliamentary delegation led by the Chairman of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus H.E. Mr. Vladimir P. Andreychenko. An agreement was reached on the return visit of the Speaker of the Parliament of Sri Lanka H.E. Mr. Karu Jayasuriya to the Republic of Belarus. To support and develop contacts between the legislatures of both the countries, a working group on cooperation with the Parliament of Sri Lanka was formed in the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus of the sixth convocation.
On August 22, 2016, the third round of political consultations between the two countries were held in Minsk. The Belarusian side was headed by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs H.E. Mr. Valentin B. Rybakov. The Sri Lankan side was led by the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka H.E. Mrs. Grace Asirwatham.
In 2016, an invitation was received to the President of the Republic of Belarus to pay an official visit to Sri Lanka.

In August 2013, Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Belarus and the Government of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka on Trade and Economic Cooperation was signed.
On January 28, 2014, the President of Sri Lanka participated in the presentation of tractors “Belarus” for Sri Lankan farmers.
In June 2014, the delegation of Sri Lanka headed by the Minister of Agriculture H.E. Mr. M.Y. Abeywardena. During the visit a Memorandum of Understanding in the Field of Agriculture was signed.
In July 2014, the first meeting of the Joint Belarus-Sri Lanka Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation was held in Colombo. On July 8, 2014 within the framework of the visit business forums and B2B meetings were held in the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka and the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka.
On August 18-19, 2016, the second meeting of the Joint Belarus-Sri Lanka Commission on Trade and Economic Cooperation was held in Minsk.
On March 8-13, 2015 and March 28 – April 1, 2016 Ambassador H.E. Mr. Vitaly A. Prima visited Colombo for bilateral meetings at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka, other ministries and with the Sri Lankan business circles.

Dynamics of trade and economic relations between the Republic of Belarus and the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka

(in mln. US Dollars)

 

Period Trade Turnover Export Import Balance
Year 2012 46.2 35.2 11.0 24.2
Year 2013 34.1 23.1 11.0 12.1
Year 2014 38.4 27.4 11.1 16.3
Year 2015 32.0 25.9 6.1 19.7
Year 2016 20.9 15.8 5.1 10.7
January-October of 2017 17.4 11.9 5.5  6.4
January-October of 2017 compared to
January-October of 2016, %
97.9 86.7 136.1   

 
There are prospects for Belarusian machinery, especially agricultural machinery, to enter the Sri Lankan market through the establishment of joint ventures in Sri Lanka.

The legal basis for the development of humanitarian and cultural cooperation is being formed. The sides consider the drafts of an intergovernmental agreement on cooperation in the field of science, technology and innovation, an interagency agreement on cooperation in higher education, an interagency agreement on cooperation in the field of health care.
In November 2015, Vitebsk State Medical University (VSMU) opened the preparatory department of the university in Sri Lanka.
In April 2017, the first foreign branches of the Belarusian National Technical University (BNTU) were opened in Colombo and Kandy.
Cooperation in the field of tourism is developing on the basis of the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Belarus and the Government of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka on Cooperation in Tourism signed in August 2013 and the Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Aviation of the Ministry of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Belarus and the Civil Aviation Administration of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka.
On September 4-9, 2014 the Days of Sri Lankan Culture in Belarus were held and an interagency Agreement on Cooperation in the Sphere of Culture was signed.