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"The Port City is a model of mutual benefit and win-win between Sri Lanka and China" - Colombo Port City in the eyes of Sri Lanka

2024-05-31 | Xinhua | By Wu Yue, Che Hongliang

Xinhua News in Colombo, May 20 --In the capital of Sri Lanka, the construction of Colombo Port City has entered its tenth year, and it is a key cooperation project between Sri Lanka and China under the Belt and Road Initiative. In the past ten years, the port city has begun to take shape as a thriving new city from land reclamation to investment promotion.


Photo taken on March 27, 2024, shows the scenery of the Port City of Colombo, Sri Lanka. [Photo by Xu Qin from Xinhua]

In the eyes of the local people who are looking forward to Sri Lanka's economic recovery and social development, the investment and construction of Chinese enterprises in Sri Lanka have brought opportunities and hopes to the local people, and the cooperation between the two sides has achieved fruitful results.

"This is Sri Lanka's first land reclamation project, first master-planned waterfront new town, first dedicated special economic zone..." Port City deputy general manager Thulci Aluwihare reels off a list of "firsts". He said that the builders and managers from China have brought advanced technology, equipment, management models and business concepts, which are the most direct benefits for Sri Lanka from the port city. 


Photo taken on March 27, 2024, shows a beach food court in Colombo Port City, Sri Lanka. [Photo by Xu Qin from Xinhua]

If there was one word to describe his Chinese colleagues, Aluwihare said, it would be "professional". "During the reclamation phase, Chinese engineers have passed on a lot of advanced experience to local employees and promoted Sri Lanka's infrastructure construction capacity." 

Coordinating the relationship with the local people is also key to ensuring the smooth progress of the Port City project. Dinesh Weerakkody, Chairman of the Colombo Port City Economic Commission, said the Port City always welcomes questions or comments from the public on the project and is happy to communicate directly with the public. 

"It's important to build trust and understanding. Port City has always strived to provide transparent and clear information and has worked hard to ensure that everyone understands the goals and benefits of the project." Weerakkody says the port city has gained trust over the past decade.


Workers work at the construction site in Colombo Port City, Sri Lanka, March 27, 2024. [Photo by Xu Qin from Xinhua]

Nowadays, Sri Lankan university students majoring in landscape architecture, architecture and design regularly visit the Port City for internships. Port City landscape architect Wassana said most of the students who come to the internship want to work here again, believing that Port City offers more development opportunities and a better working environment.

"Port City is currently the largest foreign investment project in Sri Lanka, whether during the COVID-19 pandemic or Sri Lanka's difficult economic times, the Port City project has not been evacuated, but is progressing as planned with high quality. Now it has become a model of mutual benefit between Sri Lanka and China." Amunugama, the State Minister of Investment Promotion of Sri Lanka, said that Chinese investment has provided Sri Lanka with a lot of help in improving infrastructure and creating jobs, which has actually improved the well-being of the Sri Lankan people.


People walk at a beach food court in Colombo Port City, Sri Lanka, March 27, 2024. [Photo by Xu Qin from Xinhua]

Speaking about his recent trip to China for an investment and trade fair and visits to cities such as Xiamen, Amunugama marveled at the momentum of the Chinese economy. He said there is no doubt that China's economy will continue to maintain a high level, and high-tech products, including new energy vehicles, will better serve the global market.

"Sri Lanka's economy is on track for recovery. We expect and believe that more Chinese investors will bring new opportunities to Sri Lanka's economic development, like the Port City project." Amunugama said.

Author: Wu Yue, Che Hongliang

Source: <> 

Translated by Zhao Shengbo