Sri Lanka, Algeria discuss strengthening political and economic ties

Sri Lanka, Algeria discuss strengthening political and economic ties

Thu, October 14, 2021, 10:51 p.m. SL time, ColomboPage Press Office, Sri Lanka.

October 14, Colombo: Sri Lanka held on Tuesday for the first time ever virtual bilateral consultations at the Foreign Ministry level with Algeria, focused on strengthening political, economic, social and cultural ties.

In line with the government’s policy of further expanding ties with the African region, closer engagement with Algeria, which is North Africa’s main economy, is being considered, the foreign ministry said.

The two sides noted that last year’s total trade was US $ 5.39 million and Sri Lanka’s exports to Algeria were only US $ 630,000 while Sri Lanka’s imports in from Algeria amounted to 4.76 million USD.

As a major exporter of oil and liquefied petroleum gas, trade relations with Algeria are mainly in the energy sector. However, the potential to further increase exports, especially tea, spices, coconut products and clothing, has been explored. A virtual meeting with the chambers of commerce of the two countries is expected to move this process forward.

Recalling the long-standing bilateral ties, the two sides agreed to celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties appropriately next year. Algeria announced that it will host the next NAM summit in Algiers in 2022 and recalled that the two countries are founding members of the Non-Aligned Movement and continue to work in close collaboration at the multilateral level.

The two countries have expressed keen interest in focusing bilateral cooperation in the areas of environment and climate change, electricity and energy and tourism. The strengthening of cooperation in the field of defense and the fight against terrorism was also discussed. The Sri Lankan delegation was headed by the Director General of the African Affairs Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs B. Kandeepan and the Delegation of Algeria was headed by the Director General of the Asia Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of ‘Algeria Boumedien Guennad. The Sri Lankan Ambassador accredited to Algeria from Cairo, the Algerian Ambassador accredited to Sri Lanka from New Delhi and senior officials from the two foreign ministries joined the virtual consultations.

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