Sunday 24 October 2021
- Advertisement -
HomePoliticsWorldIndia challenges Chinese clout in Sri Lankan economy

India challenges Chinese clout in Sri Lankan economy

India and the United States have expressed concerns that a Chinese foothold at Hambantota could give Beijing a military advantage in the Indian Ocean

|

An Indian company has entered into a $ 700 million deal to build a strategic deep-sea container terminal in Sri Lanka, officials said, in a move seen as countering China’s rising influence in the region.

The Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) said it had signed an agreement with India’s Adani Group to build a brand-new terminal next to a $ 500-million Chinese-run jetty at the sprawling port in the capital Colombo.

“The agreement worth more than $ 700 million is the largest foreign investment ever in the port sector of Sri Lanka,” the SLPA said in a statement.

It said Adani would enter into a partnership with a local conglomerate, John Keells, and the Sri Lankan government-owned SLPA as a minority partner.

John Keells said it would have 34% of the company while Adani will have a 51% controlling stake in the joint venture known as the Colombo West International Terminal.

The new container jetty will be 1.4 km in length, with a depth of 20 metres and an annual capacity to handle 3.2 million containers.

The first phase of the project with a 600 m terminal is due to be completed within two years, the company said. The terminal will revert to Sri Lanka ownership after 35 years of operation.

Plans to allow India into the strategic Colombo port goes back several years, but they were scuttled in February when unions linked to the ruling coalition opposed giving New Delhi a partially built terminal within the port.

Later, the government asked Indians to build a brand-new terminal adjoining the Chinese-operated Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT).

Colombo is located in the Indian Ocean between the major hubs of and Singapore, meaning influence at its ports is highly sought after.

Two Chinese submarines berthed at the CICT in 2014, sparking concerns in India which considers neighbour Sri Lanka to be within its sphere of influence.

Since then, Sri Lanka has refused permission for more Chinese submarines to be stationed there.

In December 2017, unable to repay a huge Chinese loan, Sri Lanka allowed China Merchants Port Holdings to take over the southern Hambantota port, which straddles the world’s busiest east-west shipping route.

The deal, which gave the Chinese company a 99-year lease, raised fears about Beijing’s use of “debt traps” in exerting its influence abroad.

India and the United States have expressed concerns that a Chinese foothold at Hambantota could give Beijing a military advantage in the Indian Ocean.

Sirf News needs to recruit journalists in large numbers to increase the volume of its reports and articles to at least 100 a day, which will make us mainstream, which is necessary to challenge the anti-India discourse by established media houses. Besides there are monthly liabilities like the subscription fees of news agencies, the cost of a dedicated server, office maintenance, marketing expenses, etc. Donation is our only source of income. Please serve the cause of the nation by donating generously.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

- Advertisment -

Now

Columns

[prisna-google-website-translator]