Nirmala Sitharaman to visit Sri Lanka today to expand bilateral trade relations

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

New Delhi [India], Sept. 26 (ANI): Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman is visiting Sri Lanka from today in a bid to expand bilateral trade relations between the two countries. She is being accompanied by senior ministry officials along with a business delegation. During her three-day visit, she will be meeting with her counterpart in Sri Lankan government Malick Samarwickrama who is the Minister for Development strategies and International trade. It is a reciprocal visit coming after Sri Lankan minister visit to India in July where several issues of economic cooperation between the two countries were discussed. The Union Minister will also call on Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wicremsinghe. The proposed Economic and Technology Cooperation Agreement (ETCA) between the countries is likely to figure prominently during her discussions with Sri Lankan leadership. The visit comes ahead of the meeting scheduled at New Delhi later this week to further discuss the agreement. Both sides have begun negotiations on the draft agreement and first round of talks were held in Colombo last month. Both countries have signed a free trade agreement in 1998 and ETCA seeks its expansion to investment and service sectors along with deepening trade relations in goods. (ANI)