The Belt and Road Initiative in Sri Lanka : Challenges for Debt-led Development

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Original languageEnglish
Article number2150018
Journal / PublicationChina and the World: Ancient and Modern Silk Road
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


Sitting in the middle of the Indian Ocean and major international maritime routes, Sri Lanka’s strategic geographic location has brought both opportunities and complications to its economic development. In view of the mixed outcome and perceptions of the Chinese investment projects in Sri Lanka, this paper investigates the nuances of both successful and failed experiences in Chinese investment, and the management approach the Chinese project managers have sought to adapt to improve their community engagements and secure public support. While these efforts have not, largely, been effective, we also find little evidence that China has conspired to dominate Sri Lanka. By refuting the sweeping debt-trap argument, we further seek to reflect upon Hong Kong’s possible role in addressing the critical managerial and capacity issues in Sri Lankan investment.

Research Area(s)

  • Belt and Road Initiative, Sri Lanka, Chinese project management, Hong Kong

Bibliographic Note

Information for this record is supplemented by the author(s) concerned.