Luxembourg committed to support SL - Deputy PM
Luxembourg is committed to support Sri Lanka, said Luxembourg Grand
Duchy Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Jean Asselborn,
when Sri Lanka’s ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha
Aryasinha paid a farewell call on him recently at his office in
Luxembourg continued to provide assistance to Sri Lanka, mainly for
humanitarian purposes. Luxembourg donated Euro 421,825 in 2010 and Euro
41,991 in 2011 for humanitarian projects in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lanka’s ambassador to Belgium,
Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Aryasinha with Luxembourg
Grand Duchy Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs
Minister Jean Asselborn
Asselborn said Sri Lanka has made significant progress since the
conflict ended, and in general has shown an impressive performance in
achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), particularly in the
area of poverty reduction.
Ambassador Aryasinha earlier briefed the Deputy Prime Minister on the
post-conflict development process in Sri Lanka and had appreciated the
contribution made towards it by the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Ambassador Aryasinha informed Asselborn that while trade between Sri
Lanka and Luxembourg was picking up, an increasing number of tourists
from Luxembourg were beginning to visit Sri Lanka.
He added that Sri Lanka’s exports to the EU grew by 24.4 percent
compared to the corresponding period of 2010 and amounted to 33.8
percent of the total exports of Sri Lanka. With respect to Foreign
Direct Investment (FDI), he said, European investment in Sri Lanka in
2011 was 18.4 percent of the total FDI attracted by the country. He
noted the increased engagement between the two countries including the
visit to Luxembourg by Central Bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal last
Ambassador Aryasinha also appreciated the successful finalization of
the ‘Agreement on the Avoidance of Double Taxation’ between the Grand
Duchy of Luxembourg and Sri Lanka in a single sitting last year, which
is expected to be signed shortly. He hoped the framework provided by
this agreement will give added momentum to furthering bi-lateral
The ambassador also sought the support of the travel authorities in
Luxembourg in furthering tourist potential from Luxembourg to Sri Lanka.
Commenting on the activities being carried out by the rump elements
of the LTTE in the EU countries, Ambassador Aryasinha urged that
financial and banking centres such as Luxembourg must keep a close eye
to prevent their systems being abused by such groups.
Deputy Prime Minister Asselborn welcomed the increased economic
interaction that was taking place between the two countries and the
higher visibility Sri Lanka was having in Luxembourg.
He assured that the Luxembourg authorities have taken serious note of
the activities of groups such as the LTTE and that they would keep a
watchful eye for any such activity.