President Rajapaksa visits London and Rome; UNP delegation visits China; Sri Lankan Army Commander visits China; Sri Lanka- China discuss business; Chinese Company is offered to construct the largest project under the Mahaweli River development Program; G
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  • (JUNE 4-10)

    According to reports, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited London to attend the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee celebrations. 1 During his stay in London, President Rajapaksa held talks with British Prime Minister David Cameron and briefed him on the development in the country. 2 Following his visit to London, President visited Rome and met Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican. 3
    Reports noted that a three-member UNP delegation, headed by Ranil Wickremasinghe, left for China on June 10, 2012 for seven days visit at the invitation extended by the Chinese Communist party. 4
    According to reports, China has assured Sri Lanka that it is prepared to provide military assistance in any emergency situation, catastrophe or otherwise. China has given this assurance to the Army Commander of Sri Lankan major general Jagath Jayasuriya when he met with General Liang Guanglie, China's Minister of National Defense at the People's Liberation Army (PLA) General Headquarters in Beijing on June 7, 2012. The Sri Lankan commander, who is visiting China at an invitation of PLA, and the Chinese Minister have pledged to boost military cooperation between their respective countries. 5

    Meanwhile, Sri Lanka and China have discussed ways to further strengthen the business links between the two countries at a recently held interactive meeting organized by the Sri Lanka - China Business council of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. The interactive session has focused on export opportunities and challenges in the Chinese market for Sri Lankan exporters. During the session, the Chinese official has highlighted promoting business and economic activities between the two countries, the role of the private sector in promoting exports and imports and opportunities for the Sri Lankan exporters in China. 6

    In other developments, according to Irrigation and Water Resources Management Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva, Sri Lankan government has handed over the contract to Sinohydro Corporation of China for the construction of the Moragahakanda Project, the largest project under the Mahaweli River development Program. The total cost of the venture is estimated to be US$382 million. The construction work of the Moragahakanda reservoir is expected to be completed by the year 2014 with the help of local engineers. When completed the project will provide irrigation facilities to 81,422 hectares in the dry zone of Sri Lanka, provide potable and industrial water supply to Anuradhapura and Trincomalee towns and generate electricity by hydropower. 7

    While, the Government of Pakistan through its High Commission in Sri Lanka has awarded SL Rs 4 Million worth of educational scholarships to 165 bright Sri Lankan students of O/L and A/L under Jinnah Scholarship Programme 2012. 8