FOREIGN MINISTER MARAPANA AND HUNGARIAN COUNTERPART PÉTER SZIJJÁRTÓ DISCUSS ROADMAP FOR VIABLE, RESULTS ORIENTED AND MUTUALLY BENEFICIAL SRI LANKA –HUNGARY BILATERAL PARTNERSHIP AS TWO COUNTRIES CELEBRATE SIXTY YEARS OF DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS THIS YEAR

Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana was in Budapest for bilateral discussions with the Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister of Hungary Péter Szijjártó last Friday. The visit, undertaken at the invitation of the Hungarian Foreign Minister Szijjártó, coincided with the sixtieth anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and Hungary this year (since February 1959).

Underlining Sri Lanka’s keenness to deepen its bilateral engagement with the Eastern and Central European countries, Minister Marapana said that advancing cooperation with the Republic of Hungary across a broad policy range was central to this effort. Already, bilateral economic and financial cooperation was robust within the framework of the Sri Lanka-Hungary Joint Commission on Economic Cooperation and the ‘Agreement of Establishment of a Framework Programme for Financial Cooperation’ signed in December 2017.

The agreed areas of cooperation, following the first session of the Joint Commission in March 2019 includes agriculture and the food economy, SMEs development, water management and waste water treatment, education, science & technology, disaster management, wellness tourism and renewable energy. Tangible proposals for public-private partnerships have been identified under most of these areas. The two Ministers also reviewed the current status of four projects to be implemented under Hungary’s tied aid credit programme. These are the Bingiriya – Udubaddawa water supply project (Euros 53 million), construction of flyovers – Kohuwela and Gatambe (Euros 52 million), 148 railway level crossing protection (Euros 12 million) and electronic court management system (Euros 32 million). Rehabilitation of water treatment plants in Labugama (US $ 22.5 Mn) and Kalatuwawa (US $ 23.4 Mn), respectively, were implemented in 2017. Minister Marapana thanked the Government (HUF 11million) and people of Hungary (HUF 9 million) for the immediate humanitarian assistance of HUF 20 million (Euros 65,000) provided for the victims of the Easter Sunday attacks. He briefed Foreign Minister Szijjártó on the Government’s committed efforts to promote national reconciliation, good governance and inclusive economic development. He also highlighted the challenges Sri Lanka continued to face in this transformational journey. In response, Foreign Minister Szijjártó, while welcoming the positive developments in Sri Lanka, including in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday attacks, said that Hungary was mindful of the difficulties Sri Lanka faced in that journey and reaffirmed his Government’s full support for the country’s development programmes and outreach to the European Union and the international community.

During the visit, Minister Marapana met with Deputy Speaker Istvan Jakab of the Hungarian National Assembly in the context of the Hungary – Sri Lanka Friendship Group established in the Assembly in 2018. He also met with Dr. Andras Veres, Bishop of the Diocese of Szombathely to personally extend appreciation for coordinating the immediate funding assistance from Hungarian Catholic well-wishers for the affected in Sri Lanka. Minister Marapana led an interactive session with the CEOs of the Hungarian companies involved with the four development projects under the tied aid credit programme. A familiarization visit to the Bio Fungi agro food facility specialising in mushroom cultivation and value addition, was included in the bilateral segment of the visit. Setting up a pilot project in Sri Lanka was discussed with General Manager Arpad Mutsy.

Sri Lanka’s Charge d’ Affaires Irosha Cooray and Director General Dhammika Semasinghe of the Foreign Ministry were associated with the official visit and the discussions held.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Colombo

19 June 2019

This media release is also available in Sinhala and Tamil.

VESAK PROGRAMME AT THE EMBASSY AND PERMANENT MISSION OF SRI LANKA IN VIENNA

On the occasion of the Vesak 2019, the Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka in Vienna organized a Vesak Programme. The Staff of the Embassy decorated the Embassy premises with Buddhist flags and colourful Vesak lanterns.

On 17 May 2019, a Dharma Sermon by Venerable Seelawansa Thero was organized at the Embassy premises and it was attended by the Sri Lankan Community in Austria. As per the Sri Lankan tradition, ‘Atavisi Buddha Pooja’ was offered with participation of Sri Lankan children in the Community. Addressing the gathering, the Chargé d' Affaires a.i. of the Mission highlighted the importance of the Lord Buddha’s philosophy to build inner peace within a person and for harmony in the society too. According to the Buddhist rituals, at the end of the Dharma Sermon, the victims from the recent attacks in Sri Lanka were remembered.

One-hour Dharma Sermon was followed by Prize Giving for those who won at the Art Competition held on 11 and 12 May 2019 at the Embassy and Permanent Mission under the theme of ‘Vesak Asiriya’. Nearly 30 participants including children and adults contested at the Art Competition and it was judged by a panel of experts. Chargé d' Affaires a.i. of the Mission and the Officials of the United Nations attended for the Prize Giving Ceremony. Awards were presented to winners and tokens of appreciation were presented all participants to the Vesak Art Competition. All drawings by the participants at the Vesak Art Competition were exhibited at the Corridors of the Chancery.

A ‘Danasala’ for the Sri Lankan Community in Austria was held on the same day at the Embassy.

Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
Vienna, Austria
22.05.2019

CULTURAL EVENING ON THE OCCASION OF THE SINHALA AND TAMIL NEW YEAR 2019 IN GRAZ, AUSTRIA

On 26 April 2019, Mrs. Irosha Cooray/ Chargé d' Affaires a.i. of the Sri Lanka Embassy and Permanent Mission in Vienna attended as the Chief Guest of the Cultural evening organized by Mrs. Edith Horning/ Sri Lanka Honorary Consul for Styria and Carinthia on the occasion of Sinhala and Tamil New Year 2019 with an objective of raising funds for children development aid in Sri Lanka. The Honorary Consuls based in Graz, Austria and dignitaries in Graz have been invited for the event.

During the event, one-minute silence was observed for the victims of the Easter Sunday attack in Sri Lanka. Mrs. Irosha Cooray in her speech outlined the importance of organizing an event to showcase Sri Lanka’s cultural identity to an international audience.

A colorful fashion show by artist and designer Ms. Sonali Dharmawardena was staged. Experimenting with new technologies and innovations in Sri Lanka’s fabric industry, adding more value and texture to the fabric created using traditional Sri Lankan batik methodology, Ms. Sonali presented internationally coveted creations exclusively in a colorful fashion show. The portrayed Sri Lankan batik fashion designs by the European Modelers was attracted by the audience.

The Girardi Quartett Graz and the De Lanerolle Brothers performed together for the first time and took the audience on a multicultural journey through musical entertainment.

Sri Lankan and Austrian culinary delights were served to the gathering. All proceedings of the event will be contributed in favor of ALOKA Children development aid in Sri Lanka.

Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
Vienna, Austria
02.05.2019

MEMORIAL SERVICE AND INTERFAITH OBSERVANCES HELD IN VIENNA TO PAY TRIBUTE TO THE VICTIMS OF THE EASTER SUNDAY ATTACK IN SRI LANKA

Mrs. Irosha Cooray/ Chargé d'Affaires a.i. and the staff of the Mission attended for the memorial services conducted by Franz Scharl, Auxiliary Bishop and Vicar Bishop of Vienna held at the St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna on 27 April 2019 to pay tribute to the victims of the Easter Sunday attack in Sri Lanka. This Commemoration ceremony marked the interreligion solidarity with participation of Head of the Islamic Prison Chaplaincy and representative of the Islamic Faith Community, Austrian Catholics, numerous other Muslim and Buddhists as well as six Catholic priests from Sri Lanka. The Service was followed by a candle procession on St. Stephen’s Square and a time of Silence.

The Chargé d'Affaires and the staff of the Mission also participated for a religious event organized by Ven. Seelarathana Thero at the Dhamma-Zentrum Nyanaponika in Vienna on 28 April 2019. This event was attended by six Catholic priests from Sri Lanka, Austrians and Sri Lankan community in Vienna.

The Condolence book was opened for general public signature at the chancery from 23rd to 27th April 2019. While condemning the terrorist attacks the representatives of Diplomatic corps including Ambassadors, NGOs, and Business organizations and general public has expressed their deepest condolence on the tremendous loss of lives and casualties. Most of them have highlighted the importance of the global unity against the terrorism and their cooperation for Sri Lanka on this hour of tragedy.

The Embassy and Permanent Mission
Vienna, Austria
02 May 2019

Inquiries from Sri Lankan communities about providing assistance to the people affected by the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks

His Eminence Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith has announced that the Arch Doicese of Colombo has set up a Special Fund, to be managed by Caritas, which can be used by benefactors to send donations for the benefit of the affected people as well as the reconstruction of the affected churches. The video of the Cardinal's announcement is available at http://www.archdiceseofcolombo.com.

Details of the Fund are as follows:

Account name:   Archbishop of Colombo

Bank:   Commercial Bank Borella branch

A/C no:   1190038741

Office Time

Office Days:            Monday - Friday

Consular Hours:         09:00 - 12:00
Office Hours:              09:00 - 17:00

Contact us

Address: 
Embassy and Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
Weyringergasse 33, 4th floor
1040-Vienna
Austria
 
Telephone: +431/5037988
Fax: +431/5037993
Email: slmission(at)srilankaembassy.at



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