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* Sri Lanka in discussions with China to set up a free trade zone for rubber
Sat, Jan 12, 2019, 12:25 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 12, Colombo: A Chinese delegation led by Shen Danyang, the Vice governor of Hainan Province of China met with the Minister of Plantation Industries Navin Dissanayake on Friday (11) at the Ministry premises in Sethsiripaya, Battaramulla. The Chinese delegation also included officials from the Ministry of Commerce of China.

The Minister held a discussion with the Chinese delegation on the proposed rubber free zone to be set up in the country in collaboration with China's central government and the State Council of China.

Through the establishment of the rubber based industrial zone and expansion of rubber cultivation in the country, the government aims to raise the economic standards of rubber planters through exporting value added rubber products as well as to provide many benefits including foreign exchange earnings, new employment generation and control of finished rubber products imports to the whole country as well as to the rubber sector.

Minister Naveen Dissanayake said steps will be taken to commence the project as soon as the Cabinet approval is granted.

The Minister thanking the Chinese Government for the support extended to Sri Lanka for the development of the Plantation Sector as well as for development activities in the island, said he hopes to maintain close ties with China in the future.

"Our objective is to make positive use of all bilateral relations to uplift the plantation sector and to accelerate the overall development process of the country," the Minister added.

The Minister said that the political instability prevailed in the country in recent months has receded and the present government has entered into an accelerated development process.

Vice Governor Shen Danyang said his Government hopes to continue investments with Sri Lanka and appreciated the support extended by Sri Lanka's current government to further strengthen the Chinese-Sri Lankan ties.


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