Colombo, 10 July 2023 (TDI):  President Ranil Wickremesinghe, the Head of State of Sri Lanka, is scheduled to embark on a significant official visit to China in October 2023, marking his first diplomatic trip to the country since assuming office last year.


The visit holds importance as it aims to strengthen bilateral relations, explore new avenues for investment, foster trade agreements, and revive funding for vital infrastructure projects.

During his visit, President Wickremesinghe will prioritize expediting investments for the Colombo Port Financial City, a major economic hub in Sri Lanka. Discussions with the Exim Bank regarding the resumption of funding for the Central Expressway–Kadwatha-Mirigama section, a crucial transportation link, will also take center stage.

Moreover, the President will actively seek new investment opportunities in the Hambantota area, known for its strategic location and potential for economic growth.

One of the key highlights of the visit will be the deliberations and expected finalization of Chinese investment in a refinery project in Hambantota, projected to attract funds amounting to an impressive US$4 billion.

This investment would not only bolster the region’s economic development but also solidify the long-standing friendship and collaboration between Sri Lanka and China.

President Wickremesinghe aims to leverage this visit to forge stronger economic ties with China, a global powerhouse renowned for its technological advancements, vast consumer market, and investment potential.

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By fostering fruitful discussions and negotiations, the President seeks to pave the way for increased trade opportunities, job creation, and overall prosperity for the people of Sri Lanka.

This anticipated visit to China holds promise for both nations, signaling a new chapter of collaboration and growth. President Wickremesinghe, accompanied by a high-level delegation, is committed to achieving tangible results that will strengthen Sri Lanka’s and China’s economies and elevate their longstanding friendship to new heights.

Sri Lanka and BRI 

China and Sri Lanka have substantial cooperation in Belt and Road Projects, and investment in different projects is increasing despite slow progress.

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has committed to granting Sri Lanka a total of US$220 million to support a solar power project.

During a meeting, officials from AIIB communicated their willingness to provide USD 200 million for the development of transmission lines and grid infrastructure in Sri Lanka, along with an additional USD 20 million for project development purposes.

This financial support from AIIB will play a crucial role in advancing Sri Lanka’s renewable energy sector and facilitating the country’s sustainable development goals.