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POSTED AT 03:44 PM 11-07-2018

SL-Thai FTA talks to begin this week

Image Courtesy: Sputnik International

Discussions on possible FTA to start during Thai Prime Minister’s visit, several agreements to be inked 

Thai Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha will arrive in Sri Lanka tomorrow for a two-day State visit which will also see the launch of negotiations for a possible Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the two countries. 

Prime Minister Chan-o-cha’s official visit to Sri Lanka, which ends on 13 July, is on the invitation of President Maithripala Sirisena. The Lankan President issued this invitation during his visit to Thailand in November 2015, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. 

Prime Minister Chan-o-cha will arrive in Sri Lanka tomorrow afternoon. 

On the evening of the same day he will be received by President Sirisena at the Presidential Secretariat and accorded an official guard of honour and gun salute. This will be followed by official bilateral discussions that will cover the full range of bilateral engagement between Sri Lanka and Thailand from culture to commerce and people-to-people contact. The President will host an official banquet at the President’s House that same evening for the visiting Thai Prime Minister and his delegation.

Several agreements are expected to be signed during the visit including a treaty on the Transfer of Offenders and on Co-operation in the Enforcement of Penal Sentences, Memorandum of Understanding on Strategic Economic Partnership, Memorandum of Understanding on Technological Collaboration Related to the Value Addition of Primary Products and the Joint Action Programme for Cooperation on the Sustainable Community Development Model Based on the Application of the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy in Sri Lanka. 

“A significant feature of the visit will be the launch of negotiations for a possible future Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Sri Lanka and Thailand. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will host the visiting Prime Minister for breakfast followed by discussions focusing on economic cooperation, trade and investments between the two countries,” the statement said. 

Prime Minister Chan-o-cha will visit the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy and call on the Mahanayake Theros of the Malwatta and Asgiriya chapters of the Siam sect. He will also plant a sapling at the Royal Botanical Garden in Peradeniya to mark his visit to Sri Lanka.

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