Eric Walsh, High Commissioner for Canada in Sri Lanka and Maldives
Ayubowan, vanakam, assalamu alaikum, bonjour, greetings.
Welcome to the website of the High Commission of Canada in Sri Lanka, which also serves as the High Commission of Canada in Maldives. On this site, you can find out more about Canada’s relations with these two beautiful countries, as well as information about services available to Canadians, and to Sri Lankans and Maldivians interested in doing business with, or travelling to Canada.
The longstanding relationships that Canada has with both Sri Lanka and Maldives are grounded in our historical linkages as well as a shared belief in democratic principles. Moreover, hundreds of thousands of Canadians of Sri Lankan descent have made Canada their home, while a rapidly growing number of young people from both Sri Lanka and Maldives are studying in Canada. For those interested in studying in, visiting, or immigrating to Canada, I would encourage you to consult the visa and immigration section on the website for comprehensive information.
While my tenure coincides with a period of global turbulence, Canada remains focused on working with our regional partners to help address issues of mutual interest and concern. Issues such as the pandemic and climate change have shown us the extent to which nations have become interdependent. The problems we face are ones we need to resolve together. I look forward to working with our Sri Lankan and Maldivian friends, in collaboration with like-minded partners in the international community, to advance solutions, both bilaterally and in multilateral forums.
As a Pacific nation, Canada recognizes that we have a role to play in shaping the future of the Indo-Pacific region. In 2022, Canada launched its Indo-Pacific Strategy, which will guide Canada’s deepening engagement with allies and partners in the region over the next decade. This includes a commitment to promote peace, resilience and security in the region. In this context, Canada stands ready to support Sri Lanka’s efforts toward the achievement of meaningful and lasting national reconciliation.
We remain committed to our longstanding development cooperation partnership with Sri Lanka under Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy. In Maldives, we look forward to strengthening our partnership on shared priorities such as climate and environmental action.
In both Sri Lanka and Maldives, we are seeking to further develop our commercial relationships, in which we see clear potential for growth in bilateral trade and investment. Our trade team at the High Commission is at the disposal of Canadian companies seeking to conduct business in Sri Lanka and Maldives, as well as Sri Lankan and Maldivian companies seeking to invest in Canada.
For Canadians living in or visiting Sri Lanka or Maldives, I recommend you sign up with the Registration of Canadians Abroad program. This will allow us to find you in case of emergency. We can also provide you with important information about elections, new travel advisories and other developments. See the Government of Canada’s travel website for further details.
Eric Walsh (BA Honours [Political Science], McGill University, 1994) joined the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade in 1995. During his time at headquarters he has served as the Director General for North America (2018 to 2021), Director, North Asia (2007 to 2010), Coordinator, Middle East and North Africa (2003 to 2005) among various other positions, including work to negotiate the Ottawa Treaty banning antipersonnel mines in 1996 to 1997. Positions overseas included Ankara, Turkey (1998 to 2001), Bucharest, Romania (2001 to 2003), Counsellor (Disarmament) in Geneva, Switzerland (2005 to 2007), Minister and Deputy Head of Mission in Berlin, Germany (2010 to 2015) and Ambassador in Seoul, Republic of Korea (2015 to 2018).
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