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    Philippines Ambassador Aruni Ranaraja presents credentials

    November 11, 2015

    The newly appointed Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the Republic of the Philippines, Mrs. Aruni Ranaraja presented credentials to Benigno S. Aquino III, President of the Republic of the Philippines on November 5. The ceremonies included a honour guard at the Malacañan Palace and wreath laying ceremony at the monument of Dr. Jose P . Rizal , the Philippine National Hero. Mr. Albert F. Del Rosario, Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Minda Calaguian-Cruz, Assistant Secretary, Office of Asia and Pacific Affairs of the Department of Foreign Affairs, as well as Senior Officials of the Government of the Philippines were present at the ceremonies.

    During the tete-a-tete which followed the Credential Ceremony, President Aquino III warmly welcomed Ambassador Ranaraja and wished her well in her assignment. At the discussions, the President referred to the warm bilateral relations that existed between the Philippines and Sri Lanka, based on mutual understanding and close cooperation in the political, economic and cultural spheres. The President reiterated the need to further elevate the existing cooperation and friendly ties between the two countries given the positive changes in the Political and Socio Economic developments in both countries. Ambassador Ranaraja thanked the President for his kind sentiments, and conveyed to him, the greetings and best wishes of President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, which were warmly reciprocated by the President.

    The Ambassador briefed the President on the current political and economic developments in Sri Lanka following the Presidential Election in January 2015 and the General Elections on 17th August. While observing that the two countries would reach the important milestone of 55 years of diplomatic relations in 2016, Ambassador Ranaraja conveyed Sri Lanka's strong commitment to further elevate the existing close and friendly relations with the Philippines. The Ambassador placed particular emphasis on the Political, Trade and Investment, Agriculture, Human Resources Development, sharing of knowledge and experience in the migrant workers, Maritime BPO/KPO outsourcing, Tourism, Aviation spheres and People to People contact, as areas that could be explored and enhanced.

    The President, while appreciating the good cooperation and mutual support at multilateral fora, including elections, agreed on the need to revitalize the implementation of existing bilateral instruments and the early finalization of ones being presently negotiated between the two countries. President Aquino III noted the need to strengthen institutional mechanisms to facilitate a more robust bilateral engagement.

    Ambassador Aruni Ranaraja is a career diplomat with 19 years of service, having served in diplomatic assignments at Sri Lanka’s Embassies in Belgium and to the European Union, the Royal Kingdom of Thailand, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Italy. She was the Director General for Africa in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Colombo, prior to her present assignment. She holds a Masters Degree in International Relations from the State University of Ukraine, Kiev and is a past pupil of Mahamaya Girls College, Kandy.

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