Journal : MInistry of Foreign Affairs Press Briefing Date : Author : NA Page No. :

Extracts from Foreign Ministry Spokesperson’s Regular Press Conference on March 21, 2019

Q: An Indian company is going to spend 3.85 billion dollars on an oil refinery in southern Sri Lanka near to Hambantota, which is a huge investment for Sri Lanka. The Hambantota port is an important cooperation project of the Belt and Road. Does this represent a challenge to Chinese investments in the country by India? Is there a strategic competition between India and China in Sri Lanka at the moment?

A: Thank you for your keen interest in China’s foreign affairs. You seem always busy worrying for us.

I am not yet aware of the information you mentioned and will need to check whether it is true. I would like to say though that, China and Sri Lanka have conducted extensive and deep cooperation in various fields under the Belt and Road Initiative with fruitful results. The Hambantota project you mentioned is a good case in point. Through such mutually beneficial cooperation, China has been helping with Sri Lanka’s economic and social development. Sri Lanka appreciates and commends what China has done.

At the same time, China adopts an open attitude toward the mutually beneficial cooperation between Sri Lanka and India as well as other parties. China stands ready to work with India and other relevant sides to help boost Sri Lanka’s development. In foreign relations, China is more broad-minded than you might have imagined.

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