Hon. Governor of Eastern Province Anuradha Yahampath paid a visit to Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka on 24th of April 2022 and exchanged ideas on the current economic, political and social issues. It was mainly focused on the bilateral relationship between the Republic of China and Sri Lanka and how to overcome the current crisis in Sri Lanka with the help of China.
H.E the Ambassador stated that 01 Million Chinese Yuan (around 50 Million LKR) has been already allocated to the Eastern Province providing 10,000 packages to citizens, in all three districts under the guise of the Hon. Governor of Eastern Province.
The Hon. Governor stated that the Eastern province comprises of resources and the investment from the Republic of China will support to develop the province. Mrs. Yahampath also presented the potential of the Eastern Province, by giving H.E the Ambassador an outline of potential foreign investments projects that could be incorporated in the East. Further, she pointed out that the investment would be value addition for many existing industries, utilizing the abundant resources available in the East which includes, Agriculture, Dairy, Fisheries, Solid Waste management, Tourism, and mineral extraction.
Mrs. Yahampath suggests that these investments should always come with a partnership of a Sri Lankan party, incorporating sustainable and holistic practices. This will ensure that these projects will not be hindered by any geopolitical issues.
Mr. Qi Zhenhong stated that we can proudly celebrate the 70th anniversary of the 1952 Sino- Lanka Rubber-Rice pact. Furthermore, H.E mentioned that China faced a famine for 3 years continuously from 1959, but nevertheless wanted to continue to honour the rubber-rice pact made to Sri Lanka and imported rice from Burma in order to do so.
The Hon. Governor also stated in 2 years since the COVID-19 pandemic began, China has been the biggest donor of vaccines and has always helped economic recovery processes in Sri Lanka. China has helped the vaccination drive by sending more than 26 million doses covering 71% of the vaccination program in Sri Lanka.
Additionally, H.E the ambassador stated that state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation “PetroChina” Company has sent 19 ships of petroleum (around 730,000 MT) to Sri Lanka in assistance to the current fuel crisis.
The Hon. Governor said she was touched by the kind gesture Caihe Primary school in Hangzhou China, who donated their pocket money Sri Lankan students from low-income families for further studies during this crisis.
The meeting concluded by H.E. the Ambassador stating his plans to visit the East in May 2022.