Sri Lanka, Korea discuss cooperation in sports

The Minister of Sports and President of the Sri Lanka-Korea Parliamentary Friendship Association in the Sri Lankan Parliament Dayasiri Jayasekara undertook a visit to the Republic of Korea from 30 August to 2 September 2017 on the invitation of the President of the Korea-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group in the Korean National Assembly Jung Sung-ho.  Minister Jayasekara was accompanied on the visit by Members of Parliament Bandula Gunawardhana (the former President of Sri Lanka-Korea Parliamentary Friendship Association), Pavithra Wanniarachchi, and Chairman, Sabaragamuwa Provincial Council and President of Sri Lanka Taekwondo Federation Kanchana Jayarathna.

During the visit, Minister Jayasekaramet with his counterpart, the Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Republic of Korea Do Jong-hwan on Friday 1 September, and discussed issues of mutual interest related to cooperation in the field of sports including within the framework of the MOU signed between the sports Ministries of Sri Lanka and Korea in October 2014.  The discussion focussed on Sri Lanka’s preparation for the Asian Games (2018), the Commonwealth Games (2018), South Asian Games (2019) and the Olympics (2020), as well as cooperation with Korea in the field of taekwondo, archery and baseball.

Minister Jayasekara had a meeting with the Acting President of the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) Choi Sungho on Thursday 31 August where the two sides discussed Korean development cooperation with Sri Lanka under KOICA with a focus on sports and related fields.  The two sides agreed in principle to further strengthen cooperation in the field of sports in the context of the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and Korea in 2017.

During the visit, Minister Jayasekara and delegation met with National Assembly Member and President of the Korea-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group in the Korean National Assembly Jung Sung-ho on Thursday 31 August.  The Minister and delegation were hosted to a luncheon by President Jung and included Members of the Korea-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group comprising National Assembly Members Lee Yangsoo (Vice President of the Korea-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group), Choi Myungghil, Kim Sungwon, Choi Yeonhye and Roi Hoechan.  The new Korea-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group in the Korean National Assembly was inaugurated in March 2017 comprising members of the ruling Minjoo party and the Liberty Korea, Bareun and Justice parties of Korea.  The two parliamentary friendship groups looked forward to greater cooperation between the legislatures of Sri Lanka and Korea based on friendship, shared values and commonality of interests.

They also welcomed the consolidation of bilateral relations in commemoration of the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Minister Jayasekara also met with the Vice Mayor of Incheon Metropolitan City Cho Dong-am,the President of the World Taekwondo Federation Choue Chungwon; the President of the World Taekwondo Academy Oh Hyun-deuk, and discussed issues of mutual interest related to sports including taekwondo.  Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the Republic of Korea Manisha Gunasekera and staff of the Embassy were associated with the visit.

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