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China and Sri Lanka signed a memorandum on the creation of a free trade zone

China and Sri Lanka officially began negotiations on the creation of a bilateral free trade zone, reports the Xinhua News Agency, citing the Ministry of Commerce of China.

Memorandum of Understanding on the start of negotiations on a free trade agreement between China and Sri Lanka was signed by the Minister of Commerce of the PRC, Gao Hucheng, and the Minister of Economic Development of Sri Lanka, Basil Rajapaksa. Both sides expressed their willingness to make efforts to accelerate the negotiation process so that the enterprises and peoples of the two countries could feel the benefits of them as soon as possible.

The new agreement will concern not only trade in goods, but also trade in services, as well as investment and technical and economic cooperation.

In 2013, the trade turnover between the countries amounted to 3,62 billion dollars, an increase of 14,3 percent over the previous year. China is the second largest trading partner and the second main supplier of imported goods for Sri Lanka. China is also one of the main foreign investors in Sri Lanka.

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