He made this request when Indian National Security Advisor Ajith Doval called on him at his official residence in Wijerama on Friday (27).
The Indian National Security Advisor has stressed on the need to identify strategies to boost the economy that would allow Sri Lanka to move towards development with other countries in the region amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
As such, he had requested Prime Minister Rajapaksa to take the lead in building a dialogue between countries in the region, as well as in creating a dialogue to find solutions to a recession and boost the economy, Media Secretary to the Prime Minister Rohan Weliwita said.
Doval had reiterated that the Indian government will extend its full support towards these initiatives.
The Indian National Security Advisor had arrived in Colombo for trilateral India, Sri Lanka and Maldives consultations on maritime and security cooperation.
India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said that the NSA-level trilateral meeting has served as an effective platform for cooperation among Indian Ocean countries, adding that the mechanism is being revived after six years as earlier meetings were held in 2011 in the Maldives, in 2013 in Sri Lanka, and in 2014 in India.
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa has requested Indian assistance to implement housing projects in the Southern part of Sri Lanka.
Premier Rajapaksa said that housing schemes have been implemented in the North, East, and Central Hills with the assistance of the Indian government and requested assistance to initiate such housing projects centered in the South, the Prime Minister's Office said.
Doval had also met Defence Secretary Major Gen (Retd.) Kamal Gunaratne and discussed matters pertaining to the growing defence and security partnership between the two countries.
"They had agreed on several steps to further strengthen the valuable cooperation between the two countries which also contributes to peace and security in the region," the Indian High Commission said.