Mody expects stronger Sri Lanka and India ties after Ranil win

ECONOMYNEXT – India’s Prime Minister Narendra Mody said he hoped for stronger ties between India and Sri Lanka in a social media message after congratulating Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe for winning the elections.

"I am confident that under Mr. Wickremesinghe’s leadership, bilateral ties between India & Sri Lanka will get stronger," Mody said in a twitter.com message.

Mody said he spoke to Wickremesinghe and "congratulated him on his alliance’s wonderful performance in the elections."

Wickremesinghe’s United National Party emerged the largest party in the 225 member parliament with 105 seats, on more than the best case scenario painted for UNP of 104 by EconomyNext’s political correspondent.

The UNP will need the support of some opposition members to get a working 113 majority, but with the Tamil National Alliance, remaining neutral and promising support for policies on a case by case basis, it can expect to pass legislation with 105 seats, analysts say.

Analysts say India has a strong chance to build stronger relations with Wickremesinghe, who is considered to have a more liberal outlook than the earlier regime.

Liberals who understand that free trade and good foreign relations benefit poor people, helping wipe out poverty quickly have historically been able to forge better international relations and put an end to wars, especially in Europe.

Wickremesinghe in a 2001-2004 administration allowed India’s state-run Indian Oil Corporation to have a presence in Trincomalee port, which is of strategic interest to India, but ousted President Mahinda Rajapaksa allowed Chinese submarines to dock in Colombo port.

Wickremesinghe’s UNP party led administrations have also had strong relations with China in the past.

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