China approves USD 1 billion loan for Central Expressway

The Chinese government has approved a loan of USD one billion to Sri Lanka for the construction of the first phase of the Central Expressway.

“Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Cheng Xueyuan met Prime Minister Ranil Wickeremesinghe today to break the good news of Chinese Government approving USD 1 billion for the phase I of the Central Expressway construction.”

Instructions have been given to Chinese EXIM bank to process the loan. The ambassador requested the Sri Lankan side to expedite administrative and legal formalities, the PM’s Office said.

The Chinese ambassador also discussed Hambantota port project and Colombo Port City project. With regard to Hambantota Port, Chinese ambassador mentioned that they encourage investors to set up factories for producing high end products, the statement said.

The ambassador said once started the two projects will become the engine of growth for Sri Lanka.

The Chinese ambassador also requested to expedite the negotiations for signing of Chinese free trade agreement. The progress of Chinese funded water projects were also discussed.

The last tranche for the payment of Hambantota port is due on 9th June which will enhance the foreign reserves of the country, the PM’s Office said.