Sri Lanka’s International Trade Minister says excellent Sino-Lanka ties will bring more Chinese investments to the country
Development Strategies and International Trade Minister of Sri Lanka Malik Samarawickrema has reportedly described ties between Sri Lanka and China as “excellent” and revealed that more Chinese investments will be coming into the country.
The Minister has said that the Board of Investments (BOI) has recently signed an agreement enabling a Chinese company to invest US$ 700 million into setting up a 400 MW LNG power plant in Hambantota.
According to reports, the BOI has also received applications to establish a cement plant as well as steel-based and rubber-based industries in Hambantota. The Minister has said the agreements were likely to be signed within the next two to three months.
Samarawickrema has also said that the government is looking forward to greater engagement with China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which will enhance socio-economic development in Sri Lanka.
“Working with China will only help us, which is why we are negotiating a Free Trade Agreement with China,” Samarawickrema has said, expressing hope that a mutually beneficial FTA can be concluded within a year.
“China is sincerely looking at helping to boost the economy of Sri Lanka,” the Minister has added.
The further strengthening of bilateral and trade ties between Sri Lanka and China would undoubtedly result in more Chinese investments entering the island nation. Sri Lanka’s BOI has already signed an agreement where a Chinese company would invest US$ 700 million to set up a 400 MW LNG power plant. Sri Lanka and China are also in the process of finalizing an FTA that would further develop trade ties between the two countries. All these would provide for an excellent opportunity for local businesses to seek partnerships with Chinese companies and vice versa.
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