India To Partner With Japan, Sri Lanka To Develop Colombo Port To Counter Chinese Influence In The RegionColombo Port (thetravelguru/Wikimedia Commons)

In a major bid to counter the Chinese attempts to dominate in the Indian Ocean region and gain significance using Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) projects, India has joined hands with Japan and Sri Lanka to expand the crucial port of Colombo, reports Economic Times.

The development comes as a major policy decision, a first from the newly elected government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is set to take oath for his second term on 30 May. Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena's proposed visit to India for PM Modi's inauguration ceremony is being seen as a boost in this regard.

It is expected that the three nations will be signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in this regard in the near future. The project's goals are to increase the port's container volume capacity and increase its role in transportation in and around the South Asia.

Presently, as much as 90 per cent of Sri Lanka's seaborne goods pass through the Colombo port connecting Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. In the project, the three countries will be developing the east container terminal located on the southern part of the port and will also develop the facility to allow larger container ships.

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