- After Maldives, now Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi reached Sri Lanka
- Investment lollipop was given to correct the deteriorating relations with Sri Lanka
- China has already given a loan of billions of dollars to Sri Lanka
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived in Colombo from Maldives today to reduce the tension in relations with Sri Lanka. He met Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa and discussed tourism and investment. Tension had increased between the two countries over the purchase of toxic organic fertilisers. China’s refusal to accept the consignment felt so bad that it had blacklisted a Sri Lankan bank itself.
Sri Lanka-China diplomatic relations complete 65 years
This year marks 65 years of bilateral diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and China. He is scheduled to call on the top leadership of Sri Lanka during his two-day visit. During his meeting with Sri Lankan PM Rajapaksa, he also promised to invest more in Sri Lanka. Already China has invested billions of dollars in Sri Lanka.
Chinese investment in Sri Lanka assured
After the meeting, PM Mahinda Rajapaksa tweeted that he had a pleasant meeting with the Foreign Minister of China. The discussion focused on making necessary arrangements for the return of Sri Lankan medical students to China. We also discussed many issues including tourism, investment, relief from Kovid-19 and preparedness for the post-Covid situation. I thanked China and its people for their continued cooperation. As we both celebrate 65 years of bilateral ties, I hope that our ties will grow and strengthen in the years to come.
Program for meeting with Sri Lankan President
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang will also meet Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and Foreign Minister GL Peiris during the visit, according to Sri Lanka’s Foreign Secretary Jayanta Colombage. Wang Yi’s visit coincides with the 65th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries and the 70th anniversary of the Sri Lanka-China Rubber-Rice Agreement. Under this agreement in 1952, Sri Lanka supplied rubber to China in exchange for rice and then diplomatic relations were established between the two countries.
Tension had increased over toxic fertilizer
Colombage said that new Chinese investments could be signed during the visit of the Chinese Foreign Minister. Relations between the two countries have strained in recent months. China had protested the rejection of the organic fertilizer consignment by Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan farmers and experts claimed the fertilizer to be toxic. After which the Sri Lankan government had refused to accept the first consignment of 20,000 tonnes of organic manure from China.
Total debt of $ 55 billion on Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka has a total debt of $ 55 billion to countries around the world. According to the report, this amount is 80 percent of the total GDP of Sri Lanka. In this, the maximum debt is from China and and the Asian Development Bank. While it is followed by Japan and the World Bank. India has lent 2 per cent of Sri Lanka’s GDP.
Closeness with China increased during the tenure of Mahinda Rajapaksa
The closeness between Sri Lanka and China increased during the tenure of Mahinda Rajapaksa. Sri Lanka took a lot of debt from China in the name of development. But, when it came to repay it, Sri Lanka was left with nothing. After which Hambantota Port and 15,000 acres of land had to be handed over to China for an industrial zone. Now it is feared that China can also use it as a naval base to continue its activities in the Indian Ocean.