Buddhi Athauda appointed Sri Lanka’s new Ambassador to France


Buddhi Athauda

By Sujeeva Nivunhella
in London


Former Sri Lanka Ambassador to The Netherlands Buddhi Athauda has been appointed Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to France. He is expected to assume duties before the summer ends.

The former Consul General in Frankfurt, Athauda has served as a diplomat for nearly nine years. He was the founder President of the Diplomatic Council. While representing Sri Lanka, he held many prestigious positions in various multinational organizations. He was the Chairman of the Budget Committee of the Permanent Court of Arbitration for the years 2014 & 2015 and was unanimously elected by 115 fellow member states.

Athauda served as Chairman, Common Fund for Commodities, elected unanimously for the year 2014 by member countries at the 25th Annual General Meeting of the Governing Council, proposed by the Secretary-General of The Hague Peace Conference on Private International Law to Chair the Administrative Council to formulate a financial framework for The Hague Conference on Private International Law for a one year period.

He was also unanimously elected Vice-chair of the 18th Session of the Conference of States Parties to the Chemical Weapons at the sessions held in December 2013.

While serving as the Ambassador to The Netherlands, he was instrumental in significantly increasing trade in the fields of agriculture, dairy products, information technology, healthcare and infrastructure. He also secured funds to Sri Lanka from The Netherlands for 400 bridges program, blood banking system, erosion control and recreating sandy beaches, commercial arbitration centre, Dutch archaeology restoration etc. He also promoted Sri Lanka tourism in The Netherlands.

Neeliya Newman, a Sri Lankan living in Germany, said that Ambassador Athauda, during his tenure in Frankfurt, worked to unite the Sinhala and Tamil communities in Germany and in The Netherlands.

"The Tamil community believed in him and trusted him. Regardless of budget limitations, the Ambassador held all the Sri Lankan cultural events. He also organized the first-ever Pirith ceremony in Germany with about 30 Buddhist monks participating. He also sent many business delegations to Sri Lanka resulting in many investments", she recalled.

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