President Maithripala Sirisena and the delegation from Sri Lanka signed five Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with the Malaysian Government on Friday (16) following the bilateral meetings held at the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya, Malaysia.
These five MoUs, pertaining to the areas of Foreign Employment, Youth development, Tourism, Culture and Arts and Agricultural Science were signed by the respective ministers of the two countries. At the event, President Sirisena emphasized on the importance of development for reconciliation and thanked the government of Malaysia for its continuous support in this regard.
On Thursday, the President and the delegation attended the Business Forum which was organized as a part of the three-day visit marking the 60th Anniversary of Sri Lanka-Malaysia diplomatic relations. At the Forum, presentations were made by the Board of Investments to an audience of Malaysian nationals who were potential Investors.
Addressing the forum, Minster of Foreign Affairs, Mangala Samaraweera said that the government was in the process of finalising Free Trade Agreements with India and China and was eager to finalise an FTA between Malaysia and Sri Lanka by March next year. This is expected to coincide with the Malaysian Prime Minister’s visit to
Sri Lanka in March 2017.
He also said that Malaysia ranks among top five countries investing in Sri Lanka and in 2015 the final sum of investments amounted US$2 billion. He specifically highlighted infrastructure development projects in Sri Lanka such as the Western Province Megapolis Development and its proposed ‘Smart City’ as areas to consider investing in. Meanwhile, speaking about his experience as an investor in Sri Lanka over the past 20 years, President and Group CEO of Axiata Group (the holding company of Dialog) Sri Jamuldeen Ibrahim commended the Board of Investment and the government for enabling businesses progress through a consistent FDI framework. One of the biggest investors in the country at present, the Malaysian company CEO highly recommended Sri Lanka to potential investors at the forum also stating that the country’s workforce is dynamic and highly trainable.