China promises ‘some good news’ for debt-ridden Lanka

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PM Gunawardena has said that Sri Lanka was looking forward to China’s support in restructuring its debt at the moment and further strengthening its economy in the near future….reports SUSITHA FERNANDO

Visiting high level delegation of China’s Communist Party (CPC) on Monday promised that with regard to debt restricting, Sri Lanka would have “some good news soon”.

The delegation led by Vice Minister Chen Zhou, Head of the CPC International Department told this to Prime Minister Dinesh Gunawardena while assuring that China would stand by Sri Lanka in the current economic crisis.

Responding to a query on China’s assistance to Sri Lanka’s debt restructuring, Chen Zhou has said: “Several Ministries and financial institutes of China are working closely on this issue for quite a long period. I’m confident that Sri Lanka will have good news very soon.”

“Sri Lanka is a very special friend of China and we are considering how we could assist Sri Lanka to get over the current crisis,” Chen Zhou assured the Prime Minister.

PM Gunawardena has said that Sri Lanka was looking forward to China’s support in restructuring its debt at the moment and further strengthening its economy in the near future.

Sri Lanka is desperately relying on $2.9 billion bridge loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that is expected to relieve country’s crisis hit economy. But the region’s super powers and leading creditors China and India are yet to announce their role on Indian Ocean island’s debt restricting process.

Recently, US Envoy for Sri Lanka Julie Chung stated that China is a “spoiler” as it keeps delaying in debt restructuring for Sri Lanka.

The Chinese delegation also met President Ranil Wickremesinghe on Saturday and handed over letter from China’s President Xi Jinping.

During the meeting, President Wickremesinghe said Sri Lanka looks forward to China’s support in restructuring its debt at the moment and its economy in the near future.

Following China’s CPC delegation, External Affairs Minister of India, S. Jaishankar is to visit Colombo on Thursday and media reports indicated that he is to talk about restricting of Sri Lanka’s debt.

“India is expected to give a positive response to Sri Lanka’s requirements,” media reports stated.

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