China assures continued support to Sri LankaSeptember 10th, 2008 - 11:14 pm ICT by IANS
Colombo, Sep 10 (IANS) Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi held talks with President Mahinda Rajapaksa here Wednesday and assured his country’s “continued support” for Sri Lanka’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and efforts to find a solution to the ethnic conflict in the island nation.In a statement on the Chinese foreign minister’s two-day visit, the president’s office said Wednesday that Yang during his meeting with Rajapaksa also “expressed China’s confidence” that Sri Lanka would play “an important role in promoting and ensuring peace and stability in the region” under Rajapaksa’s leadership.
Rajapaksa has hailed China for its “generous assistance and cooperation with Sri Lanka” especially in projects such as the port construction in the southern Hambantota district, Norochcholai coal power plant in the northwestern Puttlam district and the construction of Performing Art Centre in Colombo.
“The Chinese assistance would help Sri Lanka to overcome an unexpected crisis in the power sector,” Rajapaksa told the Chinese foreign minister, adding that ongoing projects with China would encourage the flow of more Chinese investment into the country.
Rajapaksa said his government had “already decided to earmark a separate area for Chinese investment” here.
According to the president’s office statement, yang stressed the importance of continuing the strong bilateral relations between two countries, and appreciated Sri Lanka’s unshaken support for ‘One China Policy’.
Following the meeting, the Sri Lankan and Chinese foreign ministers signed an agreement whereby China gave a grant of 50 million RMB to Sri Lanka for economic and technical cooperation in the coming year.