Press digest

2021 June 4

Sri Lanka, Russia Make Headway On Port Of Colombo Investment Prospects - State Minister

Sri Lankan and Russian officials are progressing in their discussions on the prospect of Russian investment in the Port of Colombo Project at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), State Minister of Money and Capital Market and State Enterprise Reforms Ajith Nivard Cabraal told Sputnik.

"We are looking forward to seeing many Russian companies being there and I personally see that as one of the key turning points in Sri Lanka's turning, and we would like Russia to be an integrated part of that. We are discussing that today. So far we had very good meetings but we are going to have follow up meetings and ones we have that we can move forward," Cabraal said.

The project, known as Port City Colombo, intends to construct an extension of the city's business district.

It is expected to turn 269 hectares of land reclaimed from the sea into South Asia's premiere residential, retail and business destination, according to the project's website.

Cabraal added that the project could draw $3-4 billion in investment every year from different locations and ventures around the world. The project is largely backed by Chinese funding, with US leadership accusing China of trying to create a military base in the country. However, the Sri Lankan authorities have maintained that the port is used only for commercial purposes.

SPIEF-2021 is taking place from Wednesday through Saturday in person at the Expoforum Exhibition and Convention Center in St. Petersburg. The Rossiya Segodnya International Information Agency is a media partner of the event.