Speaking on Sri Lanka’s excellent bilateral relations with the US, Ambassador Wickramasuriya informed that the contacts between the people of the US and Sri Lanka are more than two centuries, although diplomatic ties are only 65 years old. Sri Lanka has been a long standing friend of the US holding deeply shared values and democratic traditions, Ambassador Wickramasuriya stated.
The tourism industry is booming in Sri Lanka and reached 1,000,000 tourist arrivals in 2012 surpassing all expectations. In this context, Ambassador cited the many references described by reputed travel writers including the latest Lonely Planet Guide which declared Sri Lanka as the best travel destination in 2013. This vibrant and dynamic sector has also attracted leading US hoteliers such as Marriott International, Starwood- Sheraton, intimated the Ambassador.
The enthusiasm of the evening was very evident with the spontaneous response received from the invitees to join the special flight which would be organized by the Embassy for the ceremonial opening of Mattala International Airport in southern Sri Lanka on March 18, 2013.
The evening drew to a close with the visitors savouring sumptuous authentic Sri Lanka culinary spread specially prepared by the Embassy chef.