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Sri Lanka Premier Wants India and Japan Cash to Balance China

  • Ranil Wickeremesinghe says debt levels mean tough years ahead
  • He hopes European investors will closely follow Asian ones

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said Sri Lanka is seeking foreign investment from India, Japan and others amid criticism over his country’s reliance on Chinese loans for infrastructure projects.

In an interview in Colombo, Wickremesinghe defended a deal last year that gave a joint venture led by state-owned China Merchants Port Holdings Co Ltd. a 99-year lease to the southern port of Hambantota. The agreement gave Sri Lanka $1.1 billion in revenue at a time when it’s spending 80 percent of government revenues on servicing outstanding debts.