Chinese support for Sri Lanka based on policies, not personalities: Xi
Apr 08, 2016 18:56 PM GMT+0530 | 1 Comment(s)
The Chinese and Sri Lankan delegations during talks in Beijing.
ECONOMYNEXT - Chinese President Xi Jinping has told visiting Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe that Beijing’s support to the country transcends politics and individuals, and is based on the interests of its people and policies.
The comments were made during talks between Xi and Wickremesinghe who is on a four-day visit to China, a statement said.
It quoted Xi as saying the Chinese government was pleased that Sri Lanka has given approval to China to resume work on its 1.4 billion US dollar ‘Port City’ reclamation project next to Colombo port.
Soon after winning power in January 2015, Wickremesinghe suspended the project on environmental concerns but gave the go-ahead recently with key changes including tougher environmental protection measures and giving land to the Chinese only on lease, not freehold.
Xi also said China respects Sri Lanka’s foreign policy and pledged support for industrial parks and to encourage Chinese industries to invest in the island.
Chinese banks will provide loans to Sri Lanka, he said.
Wickremesinghe told Chinese leaders that he will appoint a high-level three-member committee to speed up work on Chinese investments and projects in Sri Lanka.
It will consist of Minister of Development Strategies & International Trade Malik Samarawickrema, Minister of Special Assignments Sarath Amunugama and R. Paskaralingam, advisor to the Minister of National Policies and Economic Affairs.
(COLOMBO, April 08, 2016)