Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif along with a high-powered delegation will be arriving here today (Monday) on a three-day official visit, during which he will hold talks with Sri Lankan leadership for enhancing bilateral cooperation in different sectors.
The visit was organised on the invitation of Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena. Federal Minister for Commerce Engr. Khurram Dastgir Khan, Minister for Defence Production Rana Tanveer Hussain, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi, National Security Advisor Lt Gen (r) Nasir Khan Janjua and senior government officials will accompany the prime minister.
Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will welcome the prime minister and Begum Kalsoom Nawaz Sharif on their arrival at the Bandaranaike International Airport. The official welcome ceremony will be presided on by President Maithripala Sirisena, and will be held on January 5 (Tuesday) at the Presidential Secretariat. The prime minister will be accorded a ceremonial welcome including a gun salute and guard of honour.
The Sri Lankan president will lead the official bilateral discussions with Nawaz Sharif on January 5. The Sri Lankan delegation for the talks will include Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, cabinet ministers and senior government officials.
Several bilateral agreements in the areas of health, science and technology, trade, statistics, gem and jewellery, money laundering and terrorism financing, and culture may be signed during the visit. Many memorandums of understanding, including deep-sea fishing, cement, power, education and food will also be inked.
President Maithripala Sirisena will host a state banquet while Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will host a lunch in honour of his visiting Pakistani counterpart.
On the invitation of Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute of International Relations and Strategic Studies (LKIIRSS), Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will deliver a special lecture at the Cinnamon Lakeside Hotel.
During his stay in Sri Lanka, the prime minister will visit the historic city of Kandy. He will visit Sri Dalada Maligawa Sacred Temple of the Tooth Relic, International Buddhist Museumand Jinnah Hall in Kandy. He will also visit the Peradeniya Botanical Gardens and plant a “Karanda” tree (Pongamia pinnata) to commemorate his visit to Sri Lanka.
It may be recalled that several high level visits have been exchanged between the two friendly countries, which include President Sirisena’s state visit to Pakistan between April 5-7, 2015 and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s visit to Sri Lanka in 2013 to participate in the Commonwealth Heads of State meeting.