Sri Lanka formally hands over Hambantota port to China

Updated: Dec 10, 2017, 10:44 IST | Agencies

Sri Lanka yesterday formally handed over the strategic southern port of Hambantota to China on a 99-year lease, in a deal dubbed by the opposition as a sell-out

Sri Lanka yesterday formally handed over the strategic southern port of Hambantota to China on a 99-year lease, in a deal dubbed by the opposition as a sell-out. Two Chinese firms - Hambantota International Port Group (HIPG) and Hambantota International Port Services (HIPS) managed by the China Merchants Port Holdings Company (CMPort) and the Sri Lanka Ports Authority will own the port and investment zone around it, officials said.

The port is expected to play key role in Chinas OBOR initiative. pic/afp
The port is expected to play key role in China's OBOR initiative. pic/afp

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe during a visit to China in April had agreed to swap equity in Chinese infrastructure projects launched by former president Mahinda Rajapaksa in his home district.Sri Lanka owed China $8 billion then, finance minister Ravi Karunanayake said. "With this agreement we have started to pay back the loans."

USD 8bn What Sri Lanka owes China

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