Sri Lanka’s new envoy to France, Ambassador B.K. Athauda ceremonially assumed duties at the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Paris on, 5 October.
The ceremony commenced with the offering of heel daana to members of the Maha Sangha by Ambassador and the staff, which was followed by chanting of pirith. Thereafter, a religious ceremony encompassing representatives from the Buddhist, Hindu, Islam and Christian faiths took place. The religious dignitaries invoked blessings on the new Ambassador to successfully discharge his duties by upholding the best interests of the country.
Ambassador Athauda, speaking on the occasion, reiterated the need to boost trade relations with the countries of his accreditation. He identified sustainable economic growth as one of the foundations on which durable peace could be achieved. He also stated that he is conscious of his role as a public servant and that of the Embassy staff in providing an efficient service to the motherland as well as members of the Sri Lankan community while being cost effective.
Ambassador Athauda is accredited France, Portugal, Spain, Monaco and Andorra. He is also accredited to the UNESCO and UNWTO. He has previously served as Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the Netherlands and as Consul General of Sri Lanka in Frankfurt. He also has extensive experience in the private sector where he served in the senior management team of Iridium LLC, who are pioneers in mobile satellite telecommunication technologies. Ambassador Athauda is also the founder of the Diplomatic Council (DC) a United Nations (UN) registered global Think Tank with the objective to serve as a bridge between diplomacy, economy and society.