Chinese ambassador – Mr. Qi Zhenhong says that China “will continue to firmly support Sri Lanka in pursuing a development path that suits its own national conditions, getting rid of the “poverty trap” and the “trap of non-development”, and safeguarding its independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and national dignity.”
10th anniversary of BRI
Speaking yesterday (28) at the reception to mark the 74th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China, the ambassador also said, “This year also marks the 10th anniversary of the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping. Over the past ten years under the BRI cooperation, more than 150 countries including Sri Lanka and 32 international organizations have made great progress in connectivity, infrastructure, trade, and investment, with about 3,100 joint projects bringing tangible benefits to the world. As the Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka, I am more than happy to highlight the major projects between our two countries such as the Katunayake Expressway, the Southern Expressway, the CICT, the Hambantota Port and the Port City Colombo etc.”
The ambassador also welcomed “all countries including Sri Lanka aboard the express train of China’s development.”
The event was the first of its kind held in Colombo since the Covid-19 pandemic.
4 former Presidents & diplomats including the US ambassador
Minister of Ports, Shipping and Aviation – Nimal Siripala de Silva attended as the Chief Guest of the event, which was also graced by a host of distinguished guests including the Prime Minister, diplomats, several ministers, military officers, officials and embassy staff.
It was singular that four former Presidents of Sri Lanka – namely Ms. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa, Mr. Maithripala Sirisena and Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa attended the event.
Among the distinguished diplomatic community that attended the event, US ambassador to Sri Lanka – Ms. Julie Chung was also in attendance.