Chinese President Xi Jinping today (Monday) said China is willing to work with Sri Lanka to enhance Belt and Road cooperation and contribute to the economic revival of Sri Lanka in post-pandemic era.
Xi made the remarks during a phone call with Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa.
Xi Jinping pointed out that since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, China and Sri Lanka have pulled together and helped each other, writing a new chapter of China-Sri Lanka friendship.
The Chinese President said that China attaches great importance to the development of bilateral ties, and stands ready to work with Sri Lanka to determine the strategic direction and achieve steady growth of the relationship.
He said China will continue to provide as much assistance as its capacity allows for Sri Lanka’s fight against COVID-19, and seek to gradually carry out cooperation in fields like aviation and education while keeping pandemic control measures in place, and continuously explore new channels and areas of collaboration.
“China stands ready to steadily push forward major projects like the Colombo Port City and the Hambantota Port, and promote high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, providing robust impetus for Sri Lanka’s post-pandemic economic recovery and sustainable development,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry quoted President Xi as saying.
Xi Jinping emphasized that China and Sri Lanka are strategic cooperative partners that enjoy sincere mutual assistance and ever-lasting friendship.
“China will never forget Sri Lanka’s valuable support for the restoration of its lawful seat in the United Nations, and is willing to make continuous joint efforts with Sri Lanka to firmly support each other on issues concerning respective core interests, defend our legitimate rights, promote international equity and justice, and safeguard the common interests of developing countries,” he said.
Gotabaya Rajapaksa said that Sri Lanka warmly congratulates the Communist Party of China (CPC) on the 100th anniversary of its founding and highly appreciates the historic achievements made by the CPC.
Particularly, under President Xi Jinping’s strong leadership, China has made great achievements in economic development and the fight against COVID-19, Rajapaksa said.
Sri Lanka thanked China for its valuable support, and is willing to collaborate closely with China to firmly support each other’s positions on issues concerning respective core interests and safeguard our common interests.
Sri Lanka hopes to learn from the CPC’s governance experience, and especially looks forward to strengthening exchanges and cooperation on poverty alleviation and rural vitalization strategies.
The Sri Lankan Government is willing to work with China to expand cooperation in fields like infrastructure and tourism, and smoothly advance major projects such as the Colombo Port City.
President Rajapaksa said he is confident that these efforts will boost his country’s economic and social development and bring the Sri Lankan people more benefits. (Colombo Gazette)