‘Chinese help signifies long standing friendship with Lanka’

Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Yi Xianliang and Higher Education and Research Ministry Additional Secretary Madhawa Dewasurendra are presenting scholarships to students. Picture by Mahinda Vithanarachchi

Sri Lanka has become the number one recipient of Chinese financial assistance and grants which signifies a long standing friendship and historical ties between two countries, Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Yi Xianliang said.

Ambassador Xianliang was addressing a ceremony to grant 18 post graduate scholarships to Sri Lanka students at the Chinese Embassy yesterday. Sixteen scholarships were granted for doctoral candidates and two scholarships for master's candidates in the fields of Science, Arts, Management, Medicine and Engineering, linguists and agriculture. Sri Lanka is the best country with a rich history, cultural heritage, friendly people and natural beauty. The country is also the top destination for Chinese investment because of strong friendship between the two countries.

He said Sri Lanka needs industrialisation. The country needs giant infrastructure projects with professionals to work in them.

“The Chinese government supports economic and infrastructure boost of the country and supports education exchange, technology and scientific advancement. We will extend our support to produce professionals and strengthen our cooperation to to promote higher education."

He said people-to-people exchange between the two countries are important to promote friendship.

The Chinese higher education scholarship programme provides the best opportunity for students to study in Chinese universities. The scholarships are provided by the Chinese government. The students spend over four years in China. They will be qualified professionals when they come back to Sri Lanka, Xianliang said.

"There is a bid demand for professionals in Chinese projects in Sri Lanka. These students can find jobs in them after returning to the country, the Chinese Ambassador said.

Higher Education and Research Ministry Additional Secretary Madhawa Dewasurendra said China and Sri Lanka are traditional neighbors. Sri Lanka was in a strategic location on the ancient maritime silk route. China is the biggest supporter of Sri Lanka in developing infrastructure like ports, transport, airports, industry and technology as well as education, he said.

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