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India expects Sri Lanka to move on port, energy; US$1bn swap, debt relief talks continue: Rajapaksa-Modi summit

ECONOMYNEXT – India expects Sri Lanka to go ahead with agreed deals on ports and energy request for Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said during a virtual summit with Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaska and a billion US dollar swap to boost forex reserves of the island is still under discussion.

India’s foreign ministry said Prime Minister Modi expressed his confidence that the Government in Sri Lanka will take early and decisive steps for their early implementation in accordance with existing understandings and in mutual interest of both sides.

The two leaders agreed to work “towards early realization of infrastructure and connectivity projects including in the sectors of Ports and Energy through close consultations as per the Bilateral Agreements and MoUs,” a joint media statement said.

Sri Lanka has previously said India would be part of a new container port terminal in Colombo and would also be involved in liquefied natural gas plant, after a coal power joint venture was cancelled by ex-President Maithripala Sirisena.

India has already given a 400 million US dollars swap to boost forex reserves of the central bank.

Another request for a bilateral currency swap arrangement worth around US$1 billion by the Sri Lankan was still under discussion, while technical discussions were ongoing on a request for debt deferment, India said.

The two countries would also work to use a 100 million dollar credit line from India for solar power. (Colombo/Sept26/2020)