“Sri Lanka being located in the middle of Indian Ocean does not mean there is (special) investment advantage. There are other coastal countries in this region at the same time having same advantages as Sri Lanka. But China still attaches importance on the China-Sri Lanka cooperation,” he said.
Ambassador Xianliang was addressing the inauguration event of the first China Product Expo in Colombo.
The Ambassador said that Chinese financial contributions to Sri Lanka is important as it has a positive impact on the development of the country.
China became the topmost global investor in Sri Lanka by Y2013 and according to BoI data, in 2013 China had 24 investment projects valued at $239 Mn as cumulative ‘realized’ investment.
Sri Lanka’s Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen said that China is Sri Lanka’s second largest product supplier and bilateral trade between China and Sri Lanka has also been growing steadily.
“By last year trade with China have almost doubled from 2009 volumes. Also in 2014, our exports to China almost tripled from 2009 levels. According to the Department of Commerce under me, latest statistics show that China has come within the first 20 export destinations of Sri Lankan products in 2014,” Minister Bathiudeen said.
He said that exports to China in the first half of this year has increased by a strong 20 percent in comparison to entire exports to China in 2014 which was only $173 million.
He said that Sri Lanka is not only a South Asian market for China but is a great off-shore assembly hub for Chinese and Far Eastern manufacturers.
The Minister also invited Chinese manufacturers and industries to invest and partner with Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette)