Sri Lanka and China to further promote BRI and shipping and logistics sectors
Sri Lanka and China have reportedly reached an agreement to further promote the development of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) as well as the shipping and logistics sectors.
The agreement had been reached during a meeting of Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi with Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa last week.
Sri Lanka is ready to enhance Sri Lanka-China ties and actively promote the joint development of the Belt and Road Initiative to build regional shipping and logistic hubs, President Rajapaksa has reportedly said.
The Sri Lankan government fully supports the development of projects such as the Colombo Port City and the Hambantota Port, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa has said.
A report in seatrade-maritime.com has stated that the Colombo Port City and the Hambantota Port are the two major projects developed and funded by China in Sri Lanka.
Meanwhile, Wang Yi has said that China will encourage more Chinese enterprises to invest in Sri Lanka and establish cooperation on various sectors, will support the country to build shipping and logistics hubs as well as industrial and financial centers in the region.
Sri Lanka and China enjoy strong bilateral and trade ties that are to be further boosted with the promotion of China’s BRI as well as the logistics and shipping sector. China is one of the main financial lenders to Sri Lanka and is engaged in many development projects in the island. China and Sri Lanka are also looking at reaching a free trade agreement. Given the strong ties between the two countries, Chinese businesses/investors could explore business/investment opportunities in Sri Lanka and also look at forming partnerships/joint ventures with local companies. Foreign businesses interested in doing business with China could also look at setting up base in Sri Lanka to engage with China using the privilege status enjoyed by the Indian Ocean island.
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