Home » Sound foreign policy helped fast track debt restructuring – Minister

Sound foreign policy helped fast track debt restructuring – Minister

by Gayan Abeykoon
December 8, 2023 1:23 am 0 comment

During debt restructuring, good relations were maintained with countries that have different views and accordingly, the second installment of the International Monetary Fund is likely to be received by December 12, 2023, Foreign Affairs Minister, President’s Counsel Ali Sabry said. The Foreign Affairs Minister said this yesterday (7) joining the debate on the expenditure headings of the Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Labour and Foreign Employment Ministries.

He said that the IMF was able to get the first installment of the loan very quickly because all these countries, which have different ideas, managed very well in the new reform process.

“So far, a very good relationship has been established with Japan, China, India and the Middle Eastern countries. This is a great achievement,”he said.

Commenting further, the Minister said: We were able to achieve these achievements in a very short period of time by managing the challenges we had. It was the first time that a Head of State from this country went to countries like France and Germany. The French President came to this country for the first time. We extend our hands of friendship to everyone. President Ranil Wickremesinghe has been able to speak to Presidents all over the world. We have been able to stand up as an independent country with the support of all countries. And we have been able to quickly restructure our debt.

The minister also said that Israel is acting without loyalty in the Palestine war. He also said that Sri Lanka has always intervened in this regard.

He said the Foreign Affairs Ministry intervened to boost tourism in the country. In the last few months, foreign leaders of all countries were called and pointed out the situation in this country. Accordingly, even airlines, which did not deal with Sri Lanka, was able to be brought to Sri Lanka after negotiating with various countries. Only 719,000 tourists came to Sri Lanka last year. But this year, 1.5 million tourists have come to this country. Last year, 314,000 female workers left the country for foreign jobs. So far this year, 275,000 workers have gone for foreign jobs.

The Minister said that officers should be recruited every year by strengthening the Foreign Service. He pointed out that the work is being done with a limited number of officers. He said that in the 55 Embassies in foreign countries, only 164 officers are working and that number is not enough.

Approval has been received for the appointment of ambassadors since last June. 65 percent of them are Foreign Service officers. The best group of officers were recruited after many years.

He said that the queues for the people coming to get the services of the Foreign Affairs Ministry have been completed and many activities are being done digitally. The approval of examination certificates required for going to foreign countries is also being done online.

The Minister said that when applying for foreign passports, it takes three to four months and it is expected that the process will be digitised in the future. The Foreign Affairs Minister said that Sri Lanka always follows a non-divided foreign policy, and it is the government’s responsibility to create a country where any national can live freely.

The country will not be run as they want by betraying the privacy. It is the government’s responsibility to allow people to live in a united Sri Lanka so that their rights are protected. We always work to protect the independence of our country.

Ishara Mudugamuwa

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