Could relations between Sri Lanka and China get closer?

As China wants to grow its global influence, the Asia-Pacific region seems to be key to start the process and Indian Ocean Island nation – Sri Lanka, is one of the top priorities, as some of the latest highlights are showing.

Chinese frigate arrives in Colombo

A sign of deepening relations between both nations is represented by the latest Chinese donation, consisting of a Type 053 frigate. The ship was commissioned into the PLA Navy in 1994 and was offered to the Sri Lankan navy in June.

The move comes two days after Maithripala Sirisena, the Sri Lankan President, announced that a deal allowing US navy free access to the island’s ports will not be permitted:

“Some foreign powers are attempting to make Sri Lanka their base. But I will not allow any agreement which poses a threat to our country to be signed.”

China continues to seek new foreign ties in a period when its domestic economy continues to slow. As the FINQ calendar showed, Chinese industrial output growth slowed to its weakest pace on record in June, as the conflict with the United States continues to be unresolved.

Widely regarded as a confrontation for global power, the odds of a resolution in the near future look small, with some political analysts expecting the tensions between the two largest economic powers to last for decades.

Diesel trains for Sri Lanka

CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co. Ltd., a designer, and manufacturer of a variety of bullet trains, subway trains, and trams, recently produced a nine diesel trains for Sri Lanka. Designed to travel at a speed of 120 km per hour, equipped with air-conditioned carriages, passenger information system, LCD TV and toilets for people with disabilities, the new trains are made for locations with high-temperature and high-humidity like Sri Lanka.

This isn’t the first time the company sells trains to the Island nation, as it had also exported three batches of 43 trains, which account for more than half of the trains currently in operation.

China and Sri Lanka had also announced to work jointly on combating trade bullying, as the confrontation with the United States continues. The initiative wants to promote an open world economy and economic globalization by building a community of common interests through win-win cooperation. Despite opposition from the Western World, China it’s on its way to expand its influence in the Asia-Pacific region, a key geopolitical area in the long run.

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