Welcome Message from the Canadian High Commissioner

Ayubowan, vanakam, bonjour, hello 

Welcome to the website of the High Commission of Canada in Sri Lanka, which also serves as the Embassy of Canada to the Maldives.  On this site, you can find out more about Canada’s relations with these two beautiful nations, as well information about services available to Canadians, and to Sri Lankans and Maldivians interested in doing business with or travelling to Canada.

Canada and Sri Lanka share deep people-to-people links, which we are happy to see continue to grow. Hundreds of thousands of Canadians of Sri Lankan descent make Canada their home, while a rapidly growing number of young people from Sri Lanka and Maldives are studying in Canada.  Please consult the visa and immigration links on the website for comprehensive information.  

Canada sees great value in a rules-based international order for the 21st century to achieve our collective goal of a better, safer, more just, more prosperous, and sustainable world. We support greater regional cooperation and continued work in important multilateral organizations such as the United Nations and the Commonwealth to advance respect for human rights and democracy in all member states. 

Canada welcomes the Government of Sri Lanka’s commitment to democracy, peace and reconciliation, including transitional justice. Canada stands ready to work with Sri Lanka and the Maldives to support their efforts to advance democracy, good governance and respect for the rule of law.

I am proud of Canada’s longstanding development cooperation partnership, which is aligned with Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy ‎and which recognizes that promoting gender equality and empowering women and girls is the most effective way to reduce poverty and promote prosperity.

Boosting trade is a Government of Canada priority: there is real potential for growth in two-way trade and investment.  Our trade team at the High Commission is at the disposal of Canadian companies seeking to conduct business in Sri Lanka and Maldives. 

For Canadians living in or visiting Sri Lanka or Maldives, I recommend you sign up with the Registration of Canadians Abroad program.  This will allow us to find you in case of emergency. We can also provide you with important information about elections, new travel advisories and other developments.  See the Government of Canada’s travel website (www.travel.gc.ca) for further details.‎

Feel free to follow me @McKinnonDavid, or the High Commission @CanHCSriLanka. 

David McKinnon
High Commissioner


David McKinnon (BA [History], University of Toronto, 1986; MBA, Queen’s University, 2002) joined the Department of External Affairs as a trade commissioner in 1987. During his time in Ottawa, he has served in a variety of positions related to the range of Canada’s overseas trade, economic and diplomatic interests, including as director for Asia-Pacific policy (2002 to 2004). From 2013 to 2017, he was executive director of strategic policy and planning and then director general of the Physical Resources Bureau. Mr. McKinnon’s assignments overseas have included Bangkok (1989 to 1992), Canberra (1994 to 1998 and 2009 to 2013, the latter as deputy head of mission) and New Delhi (2004 to 2009), where he was the minister-counsellor responsible for the delivery of Canada’s trade and investment program in India and Nepal.

High Commissioner David McKinnon