Hambantota port isn’t an outcome of debt trap: China

By Monitoring Desk
Wednesday – July 4, 2018
BEIJING (China): Chinese foreign office (FO) spokesman Lu Kang on Tuesday dismissed the allegation that China made Sri Lanka hand over the Hambantota port to it with “debt trap” nor that China harbors military intentions by constructing the port.

According to Kang, the relevant reports, which are a gross distortion of facts, are either irresponsible or engineered by people with ulterior motives. We hope that the media will not be so obsessed with fake news.

The construction of the Hambantota port represents the aspiration of the successive Sri Lankan governments and its people.

China encourages the relevant Chinese enterprises to conduct cooperation on this project with Sri Lanka in accordance with the business principles and on the basis of equality and mutual benefit.

The Chinese financial institutions, in light of the needs of the Sri Lankan side, provided support for it to bridge the financing gap.

With the advancement of the project, China adjusted the assets allocation against all odds according to the aspiration of the Sri Lankan side.

These moves are all conducive to our commercial cooperation.

As to the people who fabricated the lie of the so-called “debt trap”, if they are unable to offer tangible assistance to the developing countries, they can at least try to put the sincere cooperation between other countries in perspective.

I can tell these people that China and Sri Lanka will stay committed to advancing the cooperation on the project of the Hambantota port in a bid to make Sri Lanka the “logistics hub” of the Indian ocean.

This will not only fuel the economic growth of Sri Lanka but also contribute to regional connectivity as well as the common prosperity of the regional countries.

Meanwhile, the forum on belt and road legal cooperation, held in Beijing from July 2-3, cosponsored by the Chinese FO and the China law society (CLS) was concluded on Tuesday morning.

The forum issued a joint presidential statement, calling for legal cooperation on the basis of extensive consultation, joint contribution and shared benefits, compliance with and improvement of relevant system of international rules, proactive prevention and proper settlement of disputes, and deepening of the belt and road legal exchange and cooperation with a view to providing more solid legal support and institutional safeguard for the belt and road initiative.

When addressing the opening ceremony, Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi said that rules and the rule of law provide the green light for the belt and road to go global, as well as the safety valve to cope with risks and challenges.

We need to promote infrastructure connectivity and step up synergy of rules and standards under the belt and road initiative. China encourages and supports the belt and road legal exchange and cooperation, and will fund the “research and study programme for belt and road legal cooperation”.

China stands ready to work with other parties to strengthen international legal cooperation and across-the-board cooperation in other fields to promote greater progress of the belt and road, Yi concluded.