China’s investment in South Asia climbs to $12.29b
A.C. SHAHUL HAMEED COLOMBO—China’s investments in South Asia climbs to $12.29 billion and the regional trade crossed $111 billion as the world’s second largest economy seeks to make inroads into the sub-continent with its One Belt One Road Initiative says a media report. China’s investments in Sri Lanka, Pakistan, India and other South Asian countries have reached $12.29 billion. China, the largest lender to Sri Lanka also invested over $7 billion in the island.
Meanwhile, China’s Xinhua news agency said that China’s cooperation with South Asian countries will be very broad, thanks to the growing shared interests and market demand. “A round of key projects has been launched following the Chinaproposed Belt and Road Initiative to promote economic growth of the countries and boost regional cooperation,” states Vice Minister of the Ministry of Commerce Gao Yen, ahead of the 4th South Asia Expo and 24th China Kunming Import and Export Fair being held in the Yunan Province from June 12 to 17, 2016.
By the end of 2015 China’s direct investment in South Asian countries, specially Sri Lanka, Pakistan, India stood at $890 million, Gao said. Besides plans to step up investments in India, China launched the $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) with Pakistan. The Corridor to connect Western China to Pakistan’s Gwadar deep-sea port on the Arabian Sea was announced last year. According to another report last year trade grew 4.9 per cent from the previous year to US111.22 billion between China and SAARC countries namely Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India, Maldives and Afghanistan.