The Letter of Credence conveyed by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa appointing Ambassador Jagath Wellawatte as Sri Lanka’s Envoy to the Italian Republic was presented to President Sergio Mattarella at the Palazzo del Quirinale, Rome on February 18.
During a tête-à-tête meeting with President Sergio Mattarella, the Ambassador reiterated his commitment to strengthening bilateral relations between Sri Lanka and Italy at all levels.
Ambassador Wellawatte indicated that Italy is the home away from home for a large number of Sri Lankan expatriate communities, who have contributed immensely for the development of Sri Lanka and Italy alike. He expressed his gratitude to the Italian government for hosting a large number of Sri Lankan expatriates in Italy, in particular paying special attention to the welfare of the community during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ambassador Wellawatte expressed his mission to enhance the existing relations and cooperation in the areas of bilateral relations, culture, trade, investment, labour and education.
While seeking support from the Italian government to get training opportunities for the Sri Lankan workforce to enhance their skills and knowledge, the Ambassador expressed his desire to expand cooperation and partnership in the education sector focusing on the younger generation for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
President Sergio Mattarella, while conveying his greetings to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa stated that he was very impressed by the presence of a large number Sri Lankan expatriates in Italy in various sectors and their contribution to the development of the country. The President affirmed Italy’s support for joint efforts to strengthen bilateral relations in diverse sectors between the two countries.
An academic in the field of sociology, Ambassador Wellawatte earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Colombo in 1987. He had been serving as a Senior Lecturer of the Department of Sociology of the University of Colombo immediately prior to his appointment as the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Italy. He has published a number of academic papers on various subjects and has authored many books on sociology.
He also has corporate experience across diverse fields having served as the chairperson of the Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation, State Mortgage and Investment Bank, National Child Protection Authority and Foreign Employment Bureau of Sri Lanka.