Debt-laden Lankan port handed over to Chinese owner

Sri Lanka handed Saturday a deepwater port to a Chinese company, under an agreement to revive the island 's cash – strapped finances, which raised concerns at home and abroad.

The $ 1.12 billion deal announced for the first time in July allows a Chinese state-owned company to take control of the southern port of Hambantota, which straddles the shipping route is- West the busiest in the world, with a lease of 99 years.

"With the signing of the agreement today, the Treasury has received $ 300 million," said Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe at a ceremony in the capital to mark the handover to be able to.

"It's the beginning of our debt settlement," Wickremesinghe said.

The deficit port will now be jointly managed by the Sri Lanka Port Authority, owned by the state, and by China Merchants Port Holdings.

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