Sri Lanka assures China it will actively participate in “Belt and Road”

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Sri Lanka has assured China that it will actively participate in the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), the Chinese Embassy in Colombo said today.

The assurance was given when the Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Cheng Xueyuan met Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana for talks, the Embassy said.

Both sides exchanged views on bilateral political, economic and trade relations as well as international and regional cooperation.

Ambassador Cheng expressed the view that China and Sri Lanka are traditionally friendly neighbors and have been long supporting each other’s core interests and major concerns.

Attaching great importance to Sino-Sri Lanka relations, the Ambassador said that China is willing to work with all sectors of Sri Lanka to actively implement the consensus reached by leaders of both countries, speed up the mega projects cooperation under the BRI framework and strive for early harvest to bring real benefit to the two peoples.

“The Chinese side is following the current situation in Sri Lanka. We believe that the Sri Lankan government and its people are capable of handling the current situation, and upholding Sri Lanka’s social stability and ethnic solidarity. We also hope that Sri Lanka will take concrete measures to protect the security and legitimate interests of Chinese citizens in Sri Lanka,” the Chinese Embassy said.

Foreign Minister Marapana praised the long-standing friendship between the two countries and thanked China for its long-term support to Sri Lanka’s economic and social development as well as to Sri Lanka’s efforts to safeguard national unity and stability.

Marapana emphasized that Sri Lanka firmly adheres to the “One China” policy and actively participates in the joint construction of “Belt and Road” Initiative. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka will coordinate various Government departments to speed up projects assessment and approval in order to promote the friendly cooperation, and bring tangible benefits to the Sri Lankan people as soon as possible. Minister Marapana also briefed the Chinese envoy on the current situation in Sri Lanka and thanked China for its steady position. Both sides also exchanged views on issues of common concern. (Colombo Gazette)

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