UNSTARRED QUESTION NO-3869
ANSWERED ON- 11/08/2023
AGREEMENTS WITH SRI LANKA
3869. SHRI A. GANESHAMURTHI
SHRI A. THIRUNAVUKKARASAR SU
DR. PON GAUTHAM SIGAMANI
Will the Minister of EXTERNAL AFFAIRS be pleased to state :-
(a) the details of recent visit by President of Sri Lankan to India;
(b) whether agreements on technology, renewable energy, maritime and air connectivity, mutual cooperation in tourism, trade and higher education also came up for discussion, if so, the details thereof;
(c) whether implementation of 13th Amendment of the constitution to enable autonomy to all provinces was discussed, if so, the outcome thereof along with the details of topics assuring rehabilitation of the displaces Sri Lankan Tamils including construction of dwelling units;
(d) whether any bilateral agreements were signed with the Sri Lankan President and if so, the details thereof; and
(e) the details of financial and humanitarian assistance so far provided by India to Sri Lanka to save the country from bankruptcy?
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE MINISTRY OF EXTERNAL AFFAIRS
(a to d) President of Sri Lanka H.E. Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe paid an official visit to India on 20-21 July 2023 at the invitation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. During the visit, the President of Sri Lanka called on President Smt. Droupadi Murmu and held restricted as well as delegation level discussions with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.
Prime Minister Modi and President Wickremesinghe discussed various aspects of the bilateral relationship. A Vision statement titled "Promoting Connectivity, Catalysing Prosperity: India-Sri Lanka Economic Partnership Vision” was issued during the visit. Prime Minister expressed hope that the Government of Sri Lanka will fulfill the aspirations of the Tamils and its commitment to implement the Thirteenth Amendment and conduct the Provincial Council Elections.
During the visit, the following MoUs/Agreements have been signed and exchanged between both countries.
(1) MoU on cooperation in the field of renewable energy;
(2) MoC on economic development initiatives in Trincomalee district of Sri Lanka,
(3) Joint Declaration of Intent in the field of Animal Husbandry and Dairying,
(4) Network to Network agreement between NIPL and Lankan Pay for UPI acceptance in Sri Lanka.
(e) Under its ‘Neighbourhood First’ policy, Government is committed to developing friendly and mutually beneficial relations with all its neighbours. As a response to economic crisis in Sri Lanka, in February 2022, a new Line of Credit (LoC) of US$ 500 million was extended for purchase of petroleum products from India. A USD 1 billion Credit Facility for supply of essential items was extended in March 2022. India extended a currency swap of USD 400 million to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) in January 2022 and the deferred dues of Asian Clearing Union and SAARC Swap amounts to USD 2.5 billion. More than 26 tons of drugs and other medical supplies provided to Peradeniya University Hospital, Jaffna Teaching Hospital, Hambantota General Hospital and Ambulance Service ‘1990’ in April-May 2022 to meet the acute shortage of medicines. In addition, a consignment of kerosene was delivered for the use of fishermen in Northern Province of Sri Lanka to enable their livelihoods. A LoC of USD 55 million for urea fertilizer was extended in June 2022. In order to cater to the daily needs of recipient families, GoI distributed custom made dry rations among fishermen communities in four Districts of Northern Province as well as economically vulnerable sections in other parts of Sri Lanka such as Eastern, Southern and Western Provinces.