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Sri Lanka, China vow to enhance cooperation

     COLOMBO, June 11 (Xinhua) -- Sri Lankan Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne and the visiting Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Dejiang stressed here on Friday to enhance the two friendly nations' cooperation in a wide range of areas including economy, education, culture and international affairs.

     Jayaratne told Zhang that Sri Lanka's economy has been greatly benefited by some mega-projects funded by China in recent years. He also expressed his gratitude to China's participation in Sri Lanka's economic rebuilding after the conclusion of a 30-year-old civil war.

     The Sri Lanka prime minister said Sri Lanka treasures the friendship between the two countries and unswervingly supports China on issues of her core interests.

     Zhang congratulated Sri Lanka for the end of the civil war, as well as the steady progress in rebuilding and social-economic development.

     He said China hopes to continue to increase friendly exchange between the two countries and enhance cooperation in the areas of infrastructure, industry, communication, energy, education, culture, tourism, among others.

     Zhang also proposed the two countries to enhance multilateral cooperation in the international arena to protect the just rights and interests of the developing nations.

     They also witnessed the signing of several economic and commercial cooperation agreements after their talks.

     Sri Lankan speaker Chamal Rajapaksa held talks with Zhang earlier on Friday.  

     The Chinese vice premier arrived in Colombo Thursday night for a three-day visit to Sri Lanka, the second stop of his four-nation tour which will also take him to Greece and Austria. He visited Pakistan before his arrival to Colombo.

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