The Government of Sri Lanka has indicated its intention to apply at the appropriate time to be granted the tariff preferences provided under the special incentive arrangement for sustainable development and good governance.
The Council reiterates that the purpose of GSP+ is to encourage beneficiary countries to effectively implement the core international conventions on human and labour rights, environmental protection and good governance.
It takes positive note of the progress recently achieved and encourages Sri Lanka to undertake all remaining necessary preparatory work.
The Council calls on the High Representative and the European Commission to continue to engage with Sri Lanka to support its efforts to lay the groundwork for a renewed application for GSP+.
The Council commends the steps Sri Lanka has taken to comply with the regulations of the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission and encourages the Sri Lankan authorities to take the further measures necessary to address the shortcomings established in the context of the EU legislation on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fishing, so that the ban on fishery exports to the EU can be lifted as soon as possible.
The Council welcomes the significant advances made by the Government of Sri Lanka since the presidential elections held in January 2015 to restore democratic governance, initiate a process of national reconciliation and re-engage with the international community and the United Nations system.
The Council looks forward to regular updates on future progress and welcomes continued dialogue between the EU and the Government of Sri Lanka, including through meetings of the joint bodies established under the Cooperation Agreement on Partnership and Development.