New Delhi: On his first visit here after becoming Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe today pitched for "very close" ties with India with focus on enhancing cooperation in the fields of trade, investment and maritime security in Indian Ocean.
Wickremesinghe, who held detailed talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier in the day, also emphasised the need for enhancing cooperation in maritime security in the Indian Ocean.
"We must have a good and very close cooperation with India," he said while addressing a function here organised by a think-tank India Foundation.
Wickremesinghe, who was elected recently, said he had briefed Modi about the new developments in Sri Lanka politically and otherwise and on how the two countries can work together.
"We have agreed on many other issues including the sphere of economy with an emphasis on trade, investment and in the sphere of technology... (and discussed) some outstanding matters which have to be resolved," he said.
The Sri Lankan Prime Minister said the two leaders also looked at the maritime security of the Indian Ocean and how the two countries can work together in this aspect.
Vital Sea Lanes of Communications (SLOC), that link the world trade, pass through maritime waters of the two Indian Ocean countries.
Wickremesinghe said he has proposed to Modi to have an interaction with the members of the Parliament of both the countries.
"One of the proposals we have made to the Prime Minister that there should be a meeting with the delegation of political party leaders from both sides...From Sri Lankan Parliament and the Lok Sabha and Rajya sabha. If we can meet annually for a few days then we can know how Parliament functions," he said.
At the event, he was felicitated by Urban Development and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu and Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha.