Covid-19: India, Sri Lanka hold talks on Colombo's debt repayment

WION NEW DELHI Jun 30, 2020, 11.01 PM(IST) Written By: Sidhant Sibal

Sri Lanka President Gotabaya Rajapaksa with Prime Minister Narendra Modi (File photo) Photograph:( AFP )

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Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay held discussions at senior levels in Colombo on Sri Lanka’s requirements.

Indian and Sri Lankan authorities on Monday and Tuesday held talks on rescheduling Sri Lanka’s repayment to India and the country's $1.1 billion currency swap request to abate the economic impact of COVID crisis.

A spokesperson for the Indian mission in Sri Lanka said, "In the context of the situation concerning Sri Lankan economy’s external sector, the two countries have been engaged in close and constructive discussions" on the issue. 

Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Gopal Baglay held discussions at senior levels in Colombo on Sri Lanka’s requirements.

The statement said, "In the post-COVID world, India remains committed to partner Sri Lanka closely for the latter’s sustained economic recovery and shared prosperity."

The matter has been raised at the leadership level during PM Modi's telephonic conversation with Sri Lankan President Gotabaya Rajapaksa last month on 23 May. During the talks, the Sri Lankan President requested the Indian government to provide USD 1.1 billion special SWAP facility to top up USD 400 million under SAARC Facility. 

The Indian readout said, "Prime Minister assured the Sri Lankan President that India would continue to provide all possible support to Sri Lanka for mitigating the effects of the pandemic."

President Rajapaksa also sought Indian help to revive key infrastructure projects in the Indian Ocean Island country including hastening up the construction of the East Terminal of the Colombo Port.