The Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Belgium Grace Asirwatham further boosted relations between the Embassy and the Walloon capital of Namur during her participation in the annual International Day event held on 16 September 2023. This annual high-profile event, jointly hosted by the Governor of the Province of Namur Denis Mathen, and Mayor of Namur Maxime Prévot served as a platform for fostering international relations.
The event’s commemorative souvenir highlighted Governor Denis Mathen’s active involvement with the diplomatic community, which also showcased Ambassador Asirwatham’s meeting with the Governor.
The Embassy of Sri Lanka has been actively fostering close relations with Namur, having previously hosted a successful tourism promotion event last year with the valuable support of the Governor’s office. This collaboration, coupled with the Governor’s participation in the tourism promotion workshop, resulted in significant media coverage, increasing the visibility of Sri Lanka as a preferred holiday destination among the people of Namur.
In August 2023, the Sri Lankan Embassy took another step to sustain this momentum by publishing a tourism promotion advertisement in a local magazine in Namur. This initiative aimed to keep Sri Lanka fresh in the minds of Namur’s residents as an attractive travel option.
During their brief conversation at the International Day event, Governor Denis Mathen encouraged Ambassador Asirwatham to organize regular trade and tourism events in Namur. He emphasized that such initiatives would yield positive and constructive outcomes in the long run, strengthening the bonds between the people of Namur and Sri Lanka.
Ambassador Grace Asirwatham expressed her gratitude for the warm hospitality and support from the Province of Namur and reiterated her commitment to further enhancing bilateral relations between Sri Lanka and Namur.
The Honorary Consul for Sri Lanka in Antwerp Monique De Decker also attended the International Day in Namur in her capacity as the President of the Consular Union in Belgium, further strengthening the bonds between Sri Lanka and Wallonia.
Belgium is renowned for its linguistic and regional diversity, with Wallonia standing as one of its three main regions, predominantly French-speaking. The other two geographical regions include the Flemish Region (Flanders), a primarily Dutch-speaking region in the north and west, and the Brussels-Capital, where bilingual French-Dutch languages are administered. Namur, the capital of Wallonia, is not only a historic city but also an important commercial and industrial hub within the region.