Speaking at the launch of a book on Mannar last week, the German envoy said that it would be best to focus on the Ramayana trail before China’s OBOR initiative.
“In this region there is the Ramayana trail for thousands of years. That has not been re-established. I think, first you start with that before you do One Belt One Road,” he said.
He said that could pay off both ecologically and economically and Sri Lanka would then be on the right track.
“Preservation of natural resources pays off for both sides,” he added.
Under the OBOR, China has invested in several projects in Sri Lanka and this has led to concerns being raised, particularly by India and the US.
India and the US are concerned that China will use its investments in Sri Lanka to establish a military base, an allegation China has rejected.