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The Ambassador

H.E. Mr. C.A.H.M. Wijeratne

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Wednesday, 17 December 2014

To be a model embassy providing highest level of quality services and maintain dignity of  Sri Lankan Nation.

To provide excellent services to seekers of assistance and promote friendship and cordiality between Sri Lanka and the State of Kuwait and the two peoples, to promote developmental assistance, trade, tourism, investment, employment and cultural cooperation targeting prosperity of Sri Lanka.

Media Release

Sri Lanka joins in measures to protect migrant workers at the Abu Dhabi Dialogue


A series of initiatives aimed at boosting protection and improving conditions of employment for millions of foreign workers in the Gulf have been agreed upon at the Third Ministerial Consultative Meeting of the Abu Dhabi Dialogue (ADD) comprising Asian countries sending and receiving labour, which concluded in Kuwait last week. The 'Kuwait Declaration' noted that "recognizing that individual government's efforts may fall short, we resolve to work together to prevent and sanction exploitative recruitment practices that place workers at great risk and undermine fundamental rights".

Ministers and Heads of Delegations from Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Kuwait, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Vietnam attended this meeting, held on 26-27 November 2014 under the chairmanship of Kuwait. Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha led the Sri Lanka delegation.

In a message to the meeting, Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Dilan Perera called "for the introduction of a standard employment contract for domestic sector workers in GCC countries". He  commended that "such a contract which the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has agreed with Sri Lanka and the Philippines be adopted". He said "such a standard contract will result in a more contented work force, which will in turn, result in better performances by them".  As the current Chair-in-Office of the Colombo Process (CP) - the grouping of Asian labour sending countries who are all members of the ADD and where the GCC countries are observers, Minister Perera said "the two regional consultative processes complement each other". He noted that since assuming the Chair of the CP one year ago, "Sri Lanka had been able to conduct two Senior Official's Meetings, the 3rd Asia-EU Dialogue on Labour Migration and in collaboration with UN Women developed a long overdue Standard Employment Contract for female domestic workers". The Minister added that "he hoped to receive all countries participating at the Ministerial Conference of the Colombo Process scheduled to be held in Colombo in the 4th quarter of 2015".

Addressing the Meeting, Ambassador Aryasinha said "Sri Lanka had embarked on 5 thematic areas for focus under Sri Lanka's leadership of the Colombo Process - review the Qualification Recognition Processes including transnational accreditation and monitoring, Promote Cheaper, Faster & Safer Transfer of Remittances, Ethical Labour Recruitment Practices, Effective Pre-departure Orientation & Empowerment, and Developing a database on the economic trends in the destination countries". He "emphasized the considerable scope for CP-ADD cooperation in these areas, particularly in evolving a 'qualification recognition process', where the support of the labour receiving countries was pivotal towards its operationalization". To this end,  Ambassador Aryasinha "called upon the ADD to enable all CP countries interested in joining the on-going pilot project on 'Skill Development, Certification, Upgrading and Recognition' and to orient the study towards the goal of putting in place early an effective 'qualification recognition process' ". He said "this would not only bring greater predictability by ensuring that those recruited are of a better quality and will be better paid commensurate with their skill, but it would also reduce the tensions that sometimes occur between employer and employee".

Earlier at the Senior Officials Meeting which preceded the Ministerial consultation, Additional General Manager of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment K.O.D.D. Fernando and Coordinating Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Dr. Roshan Hassim,  made comprehensive presentations of  the web based recruitment system, migration management system and the pre-departure orientation programme implemented in Sri Lanka.  Sri Lanka's Chargé d'Affaires in Kuwait Mohemad Anas was also associated is the meetings, which was also attended by representatives of the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Organization on Migration (IOM), the World Bank and the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC).


Ministry of External Affairs

Republic of Building

Colombo 01.

 

 
Press Release

Sri Lanka provides immediate assistance to relieve potable water crisis in Maldives

The Government of Sri Lanka commenced delivery of drinking water to the capital Malé by the evening of 5th December. Malé is facing a severe shortage of drinking water, following a fire on the previous day at its sole water purification plant which disrupted the water supply to the city, and prompted the authorities to declare a "disaster situation." Malé is one of the most densely populated cities in the world and is home to over 100,000 people, being approximately one third of the total population of the Maldives.

The initial consignment of 5.8 metric tonnes of bottled water which arrived on a SriLankan Airlines flight was handed over by Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Maldives, Neil Dias to the Maldivian Minister of Defence and National Security, Colonel (Rtd.) Mohamed Nazim. Several high ranking ministers including Dr. Aishath Shiham, Minister of Education, Dr. Mohamed Shainee, Minister of Fisheries & Agriculture, Mr. Mohamed Saeed, Minister of Economic Development and Mr. Thariq Ibrahim Minister of Environment & Energy were also present at the airport to receive the donation. Accepting the emergency relief, Defence Minister Mohamed Nazim thanked President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the people of Sri Lanka for the timely action in this hour of need of the Maldivian people.

The Ministry of External Affairs, in close coordination with SriLankan Airlines has made arrangements to send over 100,000 bottles of drinking water to the Maldives in the next few days. SriLankan Airlines has the highest frequency of flights from any destination in the world to Malé with five daily regular flights. The water will be distributed among the residents of Malé free of charge. The Sri Lankan Government has offered additional assistance to the Maldives to address this crisis situation if required.

 

Ministry of External Affairs

Colombo

6th December 2014

 
Media Release

Sri Lanka joins in measures to protect migrant workers

at the Abu Dhabi Dialogue

A series of initiatives aimed at boosting protection and improving conditions of employment for millions of foreign workers in the Gulf have been agreed upon at the Third Ministerial Consultative Meeting of the Abu Dhabi Dialogue (ADD) comprising Asian countries sending and receiving labour, which concluded in Kuwait last week. The 'Kuwait Declaration' noted that "recognizing that individual government's efforts may fall short, we resolve to work together to prevent and sanction exploitative recruitment practices that place workers at great risk and undermine fundamental rights".

Ministers and Heads of Delegations from Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Kuwait, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Vietnam attended this meeting, held on 26-27 November 2014 under the chairmanship of Kuwait. Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha led the Sri Lanka delegation.

In a message to the meeting, Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Dilan Perera called "for the introduction of a standard employment contract for domestic sector workers in GCC countries". He  commended that "such a contract which the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has agreed with Sri Lanka and the Philippines be adopted". He said "such a standard contract will result in a more contented work force, which will in turn, result in better performances by them".  As the current Chair-in-Office of the Colombo Process (CP) - the grouping of Asian labour sending countries who are all members of the ADD and where the GCC countries are observers, Minister Perera said "the two regional consultative processes complement each other". He noted that since assuming the Chair of the CP one year ago,

"Sri Lanka had been able to conduct two Senior Official's Meetings, the 3rd Asia-EU Dialogue on Labour Migration and in collaboration with UN Women developed a long overdue Standard Employment Contract for female domestic workers". The Minister added that "he hoped to receive all countries participating at the Ministerial Conference of the Colombo Process scheduled to be held in Colombo in the 4th quarter of 2015".

Addressing the Meeting, Ambassador Aryasinha said "Sri Lanka had embarked on 5 thematic areas for focus under Sri Lanka's leadership of the Colombo Process - review the Qualification Recognition Processes including transnational accreditation and monitoring, Promote Cheaper, Faster & Safer Transfer of Remittances, Ethical Labour Recruitment Practices, Effective Pre-departure Orientation & Empowerment, and Developing a database on the economic trends in the destination countries". He "emphasized the considerable scope for CP-ADD cooperation in these areas, particularly in evolving a 'qualification recognition process', where the support of the labour receiving countries was pivotal towards its operationalization". To this end,  Ambassador Aryasinha "called upon the ADD to enable all CP countries interested in joining the on-going pilot project on 'Skill Development, Certification, Upgrading and Recognition' and to orient the study towards the goal of putting in place early an effective 'qualification recognition process' ". He said "this would not only bring greater predictability by ensuring that those recruited are of a better quality and will be better paid commensurate with their skill, but it would also reduce the tensions that sometimes occur between employer and employee".

Earlier at the Senior Officials Meeting which preceded the Ministerial consultation, Additional General Manager of the Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment K.O.D.D. Fernando and Coordinating Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Dr. Roshan Hassim,  made comprehensive presentations of  the web based recruitment system, migration management system and the pre-departure orientation programme implemented in Sri Lanka.  Sri Lanka's Chargé d'Affaires in Kuwait Mohemad Anas was also associated is the meetings, which was also attended by representatives of the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Organization on Migration (IOM), the World Bank and the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC).

 

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka

Geneva

 

29 November 2014

 
Establishment of a Web link with Sri Lankan Missions Overseas

Establishment of a web link with Sri Lankan Missions Overseas

The Sri Lanka Export Development Board has revamped its website www.srilankabusiness.com with exclusive features and also launched an e-marketing campaign to

promote the said website as an e-marketplace to enable interested participants from obtaining information on Sri lankan export products and services.

 
MEDIA STATEMENT

The Ministry of External Affairs is surprised at some of the recent statements on the outcome of the case filed by the LTTE in 2011 at the General Court of the European Union in which the Council of the European Union was the defendant supported by the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the European Commission as interveners. These statements by interested parties are based on an inaccurate premise.

The Ministry of External Affairs wishes to state that from the outset of the case being filed, legal advice and expert opinion were sought from within the European Union system and specialist European lawyers. Accordingly, the Government of Sri Lanka took action in the most effective manner available, by providing material of a substantive nature to the defendant and the interveners on a regular basis. This was in accordance with Sri Lanka being a non-member state of the European Union and having therefore to meet special conditions, contrary to the national interest of Sri Lanka, in order to be allowed to intervene itself in cases before the General Court of the European Union.

In these circumstances the Government of Sri Lanka provided all relevant material to the European Commission in order to assist the Commission to resist the claim by the LTTE.

The defendant and interveners have recourse to an appellate procedure within the stipulated period from the notification of the judgment.

With regard to future action, the named parties have the options of adoption of new restrictive regulations, appeal to the European Court of Justice and national measures by European Union member states. The Government of Sri Lanka has already commenced and will continue to assist the parties to the case in their future course of action, in the interest of protecting its citizens against intimidation through extortion by the remnants of the LTTE and the possible resurgence of terrorism in the country. The government regards this as a matter of the highest priority.

 

Ministry of External Affairs

Colombo

22 October 2014

 
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President of Sri Lanka
H.E. President Mahinda Rajapaksa
H.E. President Mahinda Rajapaksa
Prime Minister of Sri Lanka


H.E. Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne

Minister of External Affairs


Minister of External Affairs
Hon. Prof. G.L. Peiris

Deputy Minister of External Affairs


Hon. Neomal Perera

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