By Easwaran Rutnam
The United States has called for a level playing field for investors in Sri Lanka. The US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B.Teplitz said that US businesses like to compete in Sri Lanka.
“But the playing field has to be level. This is in terms of public procurement and government tenders. And also private sector opportunities. It needs to be an easy place to do business,” she said.
The Ambassador expressed these views during a round-table discussion with a group of journalists yesterday.
She said that the US believes partnerships must be open, transparent and mutually beneficial.
“If this is what Sri Lanka’s relationship with China embodies, we encourage it,” she said.
Teplitz said that media reports have indicated concerns raised on some Chinese projects in Sri Lanka.
She said that the concerns includes the impact some projects have on the environment and on the limitations on Sri Lankan companies from competing for contracts.
“That doesn’t deliver the sustainable development that Sri Lankans deserve,” she said.
Teplitz questioned if Sri Lankans have a major stake in some partnerships involving the Chinese.
The US has in the past raised concerns over the Hambantota Port and the Colombo Port City, two major projects funded by China.
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