Digital infrastructure is key to Sri Lanka’s hubs development plan: Chinese Ambassador


by Sanath Nanayakkare

Sri Lanka's geography-linked strategy of becoming a multiple hub in shipping, aviation, logistics, services, financial, education and tourism must be preceded by a 'better connected Sri Lanka', Yi Xianliang, the Chinese Ambassador in Sri Lanka pointed out in Colombo yesterday.

"Sri Lanka, therefore, needs to give top priority to developing its digital infrastructure – a well developed network of ICT applications and broadband services - to make its hubs strategy a success," the ambassador said.

The Chinese ambassador made this comment while addressing the Sri Lanka Broadbrand Forum held at the Galle Face Hotel in Colombo yesterday.

Yi Xianliang noted that China would assist Sri Lanka's economic development based on its long standing friendship with Sri Lanka, from the bilateral rubber-rice deal in 1952 to date.

"Our cooperation with Sri Lanka is open and transparent. We do what we say and we say what we do", he emphasized.

Referring to the controversial Hambantota Port development by the Chinese government, the ambassador said," The Hambantota Port will be open to every one for business. We don't mix politics with business".

"Not only in building various facilities and plants, the Chinese companies will also collaborate with Sri Lanka government agencies to position Sri Lanka prominently on the global digital infrastructure map. Both Sri Lanka and the Chinese companies that provide the services will benefit from such projects.", Yi Xianliang said.

Speaking to the stakeholders of the broadband sector, Minister of Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure Harin Fernando said, " Today you are focused on discussing how infrastructure sharing to speed up broadband deployment. I hope you make the best of this opportunity to work together to help ICT development of the country. My sincere thanks go to Huawei for the tremendous help they have given in various ways to make Sri Lanka better connected.

Shunli Wang , CEO of Huawei Sri Lanka said, "Ever since Huawei commenced operations in Sri Lanka in 2005, we have been working closely with local operators with the hope of developing an advanced market in South Asia. Huawei has also been working with the Ministry of Telecom and Digital Infrastructure and we are proud to have been made part of this important forum and Sri Lanka's digital vision for the future."

The Ministry of Telecommunication and Digital Infrastructure along with the global leader in ICT solutions Huawei had joined hands for the second consecutive time to conduct this national forum.

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