Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

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chetak
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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby chetak » 26 Mar 2018 21:18

pankajs wrote:If my neighbors invite poisonous snakes into their backyard hoping it will get me and instead it gets them .. Why in the world will I care? Let me enjoy such associations.

If the poisonous snakes are troubling them then they need to act or else bear the consequence. I will secure my boundaries for now and worry about about the world later, much much later.


like we have "secured" our boundaries with the beedis and the nepalese??

How much longer before the cheeni goods start flowing thru??

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 26 Mar 2018 21:27

Let the projects complete first.

Why should I close the border and make them rethink the investment? I am all for them getting Chinese infra. Till I am not underwriting the project by assuring market access I am fine. Whatever assumptions they make is their problem.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 27 Mar 2018 08:17

The poisonous snakes are using the neighbour's property as a short cut to strike at you! It is your duty tocwarn your neighbour and chase it away or strike first before it strikes you.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 27 Mar 2018 08:26

Not my duty. Let folks who invited them in enjoy the company. I will in the meantime strengthen my borders and build up capacity to strike in the neighborhood at the time of my choosing.

This is exactly the Chinese strategy of the past 30-40 years. It is only post 2008 that they started pushing outwards in a major way. For the first 30 years, they choose to wear bangles to use the colorful phrase used by someone on this forum. If it worked for China it should work for India too tweaked for our unique situation.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 27 Mar 2018 12:23

When Chinese warships and subs make SL their "home" in the future,with missiles that can strike within minutes any part of India,you will still say "not my duty".This is sheer appeasement and cowardice,running away from the hard truth.This attitude is why India and Asia was conquered by the Europeans for 500 years,because it was "not my duty" of the rulers of the time,to challenge the external navies who invaded the IOR and landed in India eventually squatting here for centuries.

First the Portugese for 150 years,replaced by the Dutch for another 150 years and finally the British too for 150 years held sway over Ceylon.From their impregnable position there,with the great prizes of Trinco harbour and KKS in the east and Colombo and Galle on the west,they controlled the Indian Ocean.India was penetrated from Madras fist,then Bengal later through Calcutta ,the south and the north fell like ripe fruit from these beach heads.

Sri Lanka is the point of the reversed triangle that includes Pak-Gwadar,Jiwani,Karachi-all available to the PLAN in the west,while BDesh and Burma (both though to a lesser extent) are available to the Chins in the east.From Sri Lanka whose geo-strategic position is unmatched in the IOR ,a powerful navy could dominate the entire IOR from Aden and the Gulf to the malacca Straits and Indonesian chokepoints,plus east/southeast to Africa/S.Africa and further south to Antarctica. With the Maldives in its grasp too,the PLAN will have the IOR by the throat.Both SL and Pak will be their logistic hinterland for all naval stores stockpiled there,fuel and other simpler support .Heavy repairs can be carried out at Colombo dockyard and at HT in the future. There was one plan to set up a helo manufacturing unit at HT,where 15000 acres have been gifted to the PRC for 99 years along with the Colombo Fin. City mega project! By contrast India does not have one sq. inch of strategic land in the island leased out to it.
When the PRC has three nations in thrall to it,with sufficient landmass,industry,manpower,etc. to supply its navy with everything,that encompass India,they do not need any support from the mainland far beyond the Malacca Straits because they would have their colonies established!
China has resolved the "Malacca Dilemma" brilliantly,by using deft diplomacy and political interference,while our geat MEA mandarins pontificated twiddling their thumbs "as per usual".

Carry on ostrich.The next time you pluck you head out of the sand you'll find yourself heading for the cooking pot!
Last edited by Philip on 27 Mar 2018 12:53, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 27 Mar 2018 12:51

Let me be upfront ... I AM a COWARD and a bangle wearer. I take inspiration from China. {psss ... this tactics of name calling is usually resorted to by those who are devoid of logic. They then mostly resort to negative emotional pitch. But please don't let me stop you. Keep calling me a coward and yourself a patriot. I will think of it as a badge of honor. psssssssssssss... what about the tadpole? Is it still lodged .. err .. you know where.}

Now lets get back to the topic. I repeat it is not India's *duty* to protect Sri Lanka. If Sri Lanka is smart enough to play China vs India, they are smart enough to look after their interests and defend themselves. If they are hell bent on selling out to China so be it.

Ah .. history does make for an interesting read doesn't it .. but reading history upside down is never useful. You will always end up learning the wrong lesson. That should be hint enough but I will leave it at that.

1. Will such a *task force* of Warships and Subs be assembled during peace time or wartime?
2. If such a flotilla is seen approaching Malacca during wartime will Indian Navy sit quietly and let them pass @ Andaman?
3. Will Indian Navy/Airforce allow such a task force to dock at Colombo/Hambantota during wartime?
4. By the way how many missiles and how many warships can China deploy at Sri Lanka? Will that be enough to even flatten <pick your city>.

There are many such questions but I will leave it at 4 for now. BTW, Why are we afraid of a Chinese *task force* at Hambantota and not Colombo? IF Sri Lanka can allow Hambantota to be used against India it can also allow Colombo no? Why no protest against Colombo where again the Chinese are involved?

BTW, in case no one has noticed, I am not relying on the *magnanimity* of the Sri Lankans to keep us safe from China. I am confident that Indian Navy/Airforce will be able to SMASH whatever force is assembled by China in Sri Lanka.

Imagination running wild devoid of foundational logic never makes for a good policy.

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Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Peregrine » 27 Mar 2018 14:18

Sri Lanka PM seeks India and Japan investment to balance China

COLOMBO: Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said Sri Lanka is seeking foreign investment from India, Japan and others amid criticism over his country's reliance on Chinese loans for infrastructure projects.

In an interview in Colombo, Wickremesinghe defended a deal last year that gave a joint venture led by state-owned China Merchants Port Holdings Co Ltd a 99-year lease to the southern port of Hambantota. The agreement gave Sri Lanka $1.1 billion in revenue at a time when it's spending 80 percent of government revenues on servicing outstanding debts.

"On Hambantota, the burden is off us, because China Merchants and the Sri Lanka Ports Authority have taken it over," Wickremesinghe said on the sidelines of a business conference on Monday.

"We've been looking at inviting a broad range of foreign investors," he said. "Initially the investors will come from China, Japan, India. Then the others will follow. We'd like to see them coming in from Europe."

Since Wickremesinghe took power in 2015, he's been under pressure to improve Sri Lanka's finances. A previous administration secured billions of dollars worth of Chinese loans after the South Asian nation emerged battered from three decades of civil war in 2009, contributing to a debt burden that threatens to impede economic growth.

'Tough years'

Even with the sale of Hambantota and other concessionary measures, Sri Lanka has been forced to pursue other revenue-raising measures, including a recent tax reform. The country's total debt to China was $5 billion at the end of 2017, according to government treasury figures.
"It's an easing of the Chinese part of the debt burden, but we have the international sovereign bonds, so 2018, 2019 and 2020 are going to be tough years for us," Wickremesinghe said.

Sri Lanka's $1.5 billion 2027 bonds fell 9 cents on the dollar this year to 96.4 cents on Tuesday, near a record low since issuance last year, according to Bloomberg-compiled data.

The country has $1.5 billion in dollar bonds due in 2019 and another $1 billion in 2020, according to the data. Sri Lanka last paid a $500 million dollar bond in 2015.

India worries

Sri Lanka was an early participant in China's infrastructure-building plans that eventually became the Belt and Road Initiative backed by hundreds of billions of dollars in financing. Still, its appetite for Chinese cash waned after the debt burden forced it to sell the Hambantota port back to China Merchants Port Holdings.

The deal also prompted concern in India about its geopolitical rival China using a port close to its southern coastline for future military or strategic uses.

Public anger over Chinese debt helped Wickremesinghe rise to power three years ago with President Maithripala Sirisena in a coalition government that pledged to reevaluate China-funded projects they alleged were corrupt. But faced with few good options, the government has since negotiated concessions -- including turning a Chinese freehold land reclamation project in Colombo into a long lease -- while largely pushing ahead with the projects.

The administration's sale of the Hambantota port in a debt-for-equity swap to China has been criticized by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who had originally courted Chinese investment for his home district of Hambantota before losing power in 2015. A new political party backed by Rajapaksa triumphed over the ruling coalition parties in local elections in February.

Wickremesinghe said Monday that Sri Lanka needs to "focus on what is achievable and doable" by courting Asian investors first.

"Just as much as there is the Belt and Road Initiative, the Japanese are also taking a big initiative -- and the Indians," he said.

Japan is interested in investing in the Colombo port, as well as the undeveloped east coast port of Trincomalee, a colonial-era British naval base, Wickremesinghe said. Indian investors have also expressed interest in a Chinese-built airport in Hambantota that's barely used and has been criticized as a politically motivated Rajapaksa-era project.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby chetak » 27 Mar 2018 17:53

The slimy lankans are looking at India and japan to keep them from drowning in the cheeni schitt. They need the income to pay off the cheeni.

Why should we help?? A friend of my enemy and all that..............

India has plenty of ports in the vicinity that can be developed to either divert Indian traffic for trans shipment or if pitched properly and with the state of the art infrastructure, even divert traffic away from colombo itself.

First of all, minimize Indian traffic at colombo because it actively aids and enriches the hans too.

Any cheeni naval assets in and around srilanka can be dealt with fairly easily if push came to shove. India will not tolerate such hostile forces and allow them to threaten us.

This is 2018 and there are not many takers for the "bangle wearing" theory in India.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby rsingh » 27 Mar 2018 20:57

Peregrine wrote:Sri Lanka PM seeks India and Japan investment to balance China

COLOMBO: Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said Sri Lanka is seeking foreign investment from India, Japan and others amid criticism over his country's reliance on Chinese loans for infrastructure projects.

In an interview in Colombo, Wickremesinghe defended a deal last year that gave a joint venture led by state-owned China Merchants Port Holdings Co Ltd a 99-year lease to the southern port of Hambantota. The agreement gave Sri Lanka $1.1 billion in revenue at a time when it's spending 80 percent of government revenues on servicing outstanding debts.

"On Hambantota, the burden is off us, because China Merchants and the Sri Lanka Ports Authority have taken it over," Wickremesinghe said on the sidelines of a business conference on Monday.

"We've been looking at inviting a broad range of foreign investors," he said. "Initially the investors will come from China, Japan, India. Then the others will follow. We'd like to see them coming in from Europe."

Since Wickremesinghe took power in 2015, he's been under pressure to improve Sri Lanka's finances. A previous administration secured billions of dollars worth of Chinese loans after the South Asian nation emerged battered from three decades of civil war in 2009, contributing to a debt burden that threatens to impede economic growth.

'Tough years'

Even with the sale of Hambantota and other concessionary measures, Sri Lanka has been forced to pursue other revenue-raising measures, including a recent tax reform. The country's total debt to China was $5 billion at the end of 2017, according to government treasury figures.
"It's an easing of the Chinese part of the debt burden, but we have the international sovereign bonds, so 2018, 2019 and 2020 are going to be tough years for us," Wickremesinghe said.

Sri Lanka's $1.5 billion 2027 bonds fell 9 cents on the dollar this year to 96.4 cents on Tuesday, near a record low since issuance last year, according to Bloomberg-compiled data.

The country has $1.5 billion in dollar bonds due in 2019 and another $1 billion in 2020, according to the data. Sri Lanka last paid a $500 million dollar bond in 2015.

India worries

Sri Lanka was an early participant in China's infrastructure-building plans that eventually became the Belt and Road Initiative backed by hundreds of billions of dollars in financing. Still, its appetite for Chinese cash waned after the debt burden forced it to sell the Hambantota port back to China Merchants Port Holdings.

The deal also prompted concern in India about its geopolitical rival China using a port close to its southern coastline for future military or strategic uses.

Public anger over Chinese debt helped Wickremesinghe rise to power three years ago with President Maithripala Sirisena in a coalition government that pledged to reevaluate China-funded projects they alleged were corrupt. But faced with few good options, the government has since negotiated concessions -- including turning a Chinese freehold land reclamation project in Colombo into a long lease -- while largely pushing ahead with the projects.

The administration's sale of the Hambantota port in a debt-for-equity swap to China has been criticized by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who had originally courted Chinese investment for his home district of Hambantota before losing power in 2015. A new political party backed by Rajapaksa triumphed over the ruling coalition parties in local elections in February.

Wickremesinghe said Monday that Sri Lanka needs to "focus on what is achievable and doable" by courting Asian investors first.

"Just as much as there is the Belt and Road Initiative, the Japanese are also taking a big initiative -- and the Indians," he said.

Japan is interested in investing in the Colombo port, as well as the undeveloped east coast port of Trincomalee, a colonial-era British naval base, Wickremesinghe said. Indian investors have also expressed interest in a Chinese-built airport in Hambantota that's barely used and has been criticized as a politically motivated Rajapaksa-era project.

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Comments are even better.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 00:29

Sri Lanka is in a debt trap. Expect social and political turmoil as the economy takes a hit unless the Chinese back them with more loans to service previous loans. Or they cede control of major investments to the Chinese and become a sort of colony. I don't think India, Japan or other countries are going to bail them out on unviable projects. That is not how they function. China is exporting its credit bubble to other countries and gain control of these states. It is neo-colonialism. Hope Bdesh and Nepal takes note of SL and Pak and doesn't fall for it. But given the Commies are in power in Nepal it is likely to also fall in a debt trap.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Bart S » 28 Mar 2018 00:35

Supratik wrote:Sri Lanka is in a debt trap. Expect social and political turmoil as the economy takes a hit unless the Chinese back them with more loans to service previous loans. Or they cede control of major investments to the Chinese and become a sort of colony. I don't think India, Japan or other countries are going to bail them out on unviable projects. That is not how they function. China is exporting its credit bubble to other countries and gain control of these states. It is neo-colonialism. Hope Bdesh and Nepal takes note of SL and Pak and doesn't fall for it. But given the Commies are in power in Nepal it is likely to also fall in a debt trap.


When the shit hits the fan, there is only one deal that India should be offering them: Default on your loans and kick the Chinese out, and India will back you militarily and make sure no harm comes to you (provided that the security and cooperation pacts etc are signed).

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 00:59

^^
Exactly my thinking. People on this forum have forgotten that people/countries default on debt! Will China uproot the port and take it to Beijing? We will be the only one who can provide the security cover once that stage is reached. Till then let them stew.

BTW, we should participate in project but only on commercial terms and we should never participate in a China vs India bidding war for some supposedly strategic asset. I would prefer Chinese do such projects. Our money is better spent in India.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 01:19

Defaulting on debt is going to push down your ratings which in turn makes it difficult to borrow. So fresh loans have to be taken to service old loans at higher rates or sell assets. Pakistan does the former which eventually leads to currency devaluation, inflation and inability to use resources for development which means you need more loans. You are truly fooked. That is why it is a "trap".

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 01:26

That is true. So what option will Sri Lanka have at that time? Sell itself to China or default on China and ask for Indian help to sort out the mess.

I will leave the first option for now but go straight to the default option. Once they default to China there is no payment/re-payment obligation i.e. they get to retain all assets financed/built by China for free. But that will put them in the dog house for a period of time lets say for about a decade.

If they sign up for a kind of NATO like alliance with India, we should open our markets for them and help in the rebuild on commercial terms. They will start with a clean slate and access to a big market and security garuntee. Win-win for both side.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 01:33

The first thing they should do is stop all Chinese investments in unviable projects. There is a saying "Live according to your means" Everybody likes to build Dubais but you need resources. China uses its export surplus of 30 years to generate wealth. SL should diversify its foreign investments and take things slowly. Don't try to become a Dubai overnight. They are still at $8 billion of immediate debt servicing. India or Japan can easily bail them out.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 01:43

"Live according to your means" one only learns by experience. The Lankan game plan was to get free assets built by India by playing the China card. Hopefully Hambantota has taught them enough but we don't know that. Let them try building Dubai by using China.

India or Japan paying their debt is not going to teach them a lesson. In fact it will teach them the reverse lesson that they can milk India by playing the China card. Let them try selling more and more of their land to the Chinese.

Once they realize that they can't afford a Dubai they will default and kick China out. We can step in then. Till then my money is to stay on the sidelines and build up capacity to confront China in the IOR region. That should take care of any contingencies arising in Sri Lanka. We have to build that capacity anyways.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 01:51

That is not geo-strategically good as loosing economic control will eventually lead to loosing military control e.g. they won't be able to say no to a submarine base. The right thing to do is to do due diligence for economic viability of each project kind of what our babus do and diversify FDI.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Bart S » 28 Mar 2018 01:55

It can be both. Plan A can be to make them see sense on the risks and for India to be firm and send them a clear message. Plan B is if they continue down that path, or find the existing commitments untenable where we can back them up provided they make a clean break. On the fallout from plan B, Japan or India can help them with a partial bailout once they default where China settles after taking a haircut. Under no circumstances should we let them play us against China the way that they want to, though we can participate along with China and others in legitimate fair play activities like transparent bidding for infrastructure that we need etc.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 01:56

Lets then plan to take out the sub base/Hambantota port. We anyway have to plan for increase presence of Chinese subs and warships in the IOR. Our IOR plan will cover Sri Lanka.

No point trying to buy off Sri Lanka. It will not end with one project once you allow Sri Lanka to feel that they can get away with making every project a China vs India bidding war. I have already stated that we should participate in projects on commercial basis.

Added Later: On due diligence for every project. Who is going to stop Sri Lanka from trying to build nonviable projects? Hambantota was not viable. India dithered. They went to China. You can't stop that by blessing their prior mistake.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 02:10

We may have to immediately bail them out. $8 billion of immediate debt for SL is equivalent to half a trillion of debt for India population wise. That is humongous. But it should be drilled into their head that they are going down the wrong path. China already has the port. India may buy the airport but it is a white elephant worth half a billion. So cannot be repeated frequently.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 02:12

After Indian bailout, Sri Lanka again asks India to build another white elephant port. Also lets India know that friend China is waiting in the wings.

Now what should India do? How will India enforce the prior understanding?

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 02:19

That is something Indian govt has to convey and SL govt has to understand. But if someone wants to take drugs fully aware what will happen nothing much can be done.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Kashi » 28 Mar 2018 05:46

Supratik wrote:That is something Indian govt has to convey and SL govt has to understand. But if someone wants to take drugs fully aware what will happen nothing much can be done.


This has probably been conveyed at different levels. SL govt. understands this, but they probably still feel they can leverage the China factor to get India, Japan and probably US as well to come in and shore them up. It seems far fetched, but I would not be surprised if in the future, there are calls for the Quad setting up a full fledged base in Sri Lanka and in exchange for SL hosting them, they get investment and loans/aid.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 28 Mar 2018 09:49

To understand the SL debt trap you must know recent SL history.All SL wanted was a southern port for the development of the island's south.No great giant port. During CBK's time there was a Southern Dev.Council formed by the minister in charge .I knew one eminent bizman who was on it. But what happened? A former bandsman ,Alston Koch ( all "cock and bull" say some) was made the CMan! He started in Colombo the "Hard Rock Cafe".I'm told it has been wound up .So for southern SL, it was a hard rock indeed!

So SL turned to India to assist.Remember during CBK's time the Eelam War was still on and the LTTE double-crossed her during the ceasefire period by trying to assassinate her.She was v.lucky to survive, thanks to her armourplated BMW ( just sunk off the coast with other former pres. armoured cars by the SL govt to prevent unscrupulous entities from buying them at auctions !) lost an eye though.

India was asked a few times.But we dithered and to fullfil electoral promises they turned to China.They seized the opportunity, put their long term strat. plans into action, ramped up the scale and cost of the project, created the Colombo " Port City" project , to have earlier included naval facilities too and the exg. port harbour extn.,dangling huge bribes (50% allegedly by the Chin ambassador himself) before Rajapakse and his hungry familia.The inscrutable Chinz added another 25% as their cut.So anything built in SL by the Chinz costs 4 times the normal cost.I was reliably informed that someone called "Kalmadi" allegedly asked for at least the same % in his deals too!

We are now scrambling to get a piece of the action by operating the world's most useless intl. airport at Mattala near HT.It is fit for any purpose other than international flights! There is opposition to even this too ironically from Rajapakse, but since he is a Chin lackey, understandable.What I prophesied has come true.We then needed to spend only a few hundred millions in the island to preserve our interests.To counter the Chinz now we need billions! The MEA is running around like headless chickens not knowing how to stop the Chinz.Imagine if it was India not China that was operating a port at HT with 15000 acres of an exclusive SEZ in SL for 99 yrs! That is thd great opportunity missed by our fancy mandarins and experts sipping their scotch at the Delhi Gym and the IIC.

To add salt to the wound, Rajapakse was thrown out by the Lankans and Sirisena and Ranil came in as Pres. and PM, a brilliant coup by CBK.India was overjoyed. Sirisena then made his first overseas visit to Delhi.But what did we do? We just happily thought that all was OK instead of rushing a team to SL to overturn the damage caused by Rajapakse and how it could be done with India's (financial) help.As an editorial put it very well today , reflecting on the West-Ru spat, India did and will do what it is famous for, " just wait and watch".
That's all that we've done since 2000 in our backyard tx to the Lutyens crowd.Sadly even this regime has not been pro- active enough but is following the typical MEA mantra of being reactive to events.

PS:.In India at the first sign of a farmer's revolt..loss of votes, we write off agri loans to the tune of billions.A billion here a billion there.Who cares as long as retain our seats! The banks can be compensated by printing more money and the fool of a taxpayer suffers!
As many have pointed out, we are truly " landlocked" in every aspect of policy.Both strategic and foreign as well as economic.This is why we have been outflanked by another former landlocked nation, China, until they made development and expansion of their navy ( and maritime affairs) the nation's top priority.We will , as someone said, do nothing but strengthen our defences when Chin missiles will be just a couple of minutes away in SL and the Maldives!

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby chetak » 28 Mar 2018 10:29

Philip wrote:To understand the SL debt trap you must know recent SL history.All SL wanted was a southern port for the development of the island's south.No great giant port. During CBK's time there was a Southern Dev.Council formed by the minister in charge .I knew one eminent bizman who was on it. But what happened? A former bandsman ,Alston Koch ( all "cock and bull" say some) was made the CMan! He started in Colombo the "Hard Rock Cafe".I'm told it has been wound up .So for southern SL, it was a hard rock indeed!

So SL turned to India to assist.Remember during CBK's time the Eelam War was still on and the LTTE double-crossed her during the ceasefire period by trying to assassinate her.She was v.lucky to survive, thanks to her armourplated BMW ( just sunk off the coast with other former pres. armoured cars by the SL govt to prevent unscrupulous entities from buying them at auctions !) lost an eye though.

India was asked a few times.But we dithered and to fullfil electoral promises they turned to China.They seized the opportunity, put their long term strat. plans into action, ramped up the scale and cost of the project, created the Colombo " Port City" project , to have earlier included naval facilities too and the exg. port harbour extn.,dangling huge bribes (50% allegedly by the Chin ambassador himself) before Rajapakse and his hungry familia.The inscrutable Chinz added another 25% as their cut.So anything built in SL by the Chinz costs 4 times the normal cost.I was reliably informed that someone called "Kalmadi" allegedly asked for at least the same % in his deals too!

We are now scrambling to get a piece of the action by operating the world's most useless intl. airport at Mattala near HT.It is fit for any purpose other than international flights! There is opposition to even this too ironically from Rajapakse, but since he is a Chin lackey, understandable.What I prophesied has come true.We then needed to spend only a few hundred millions in the island to preserve our interests.To counter the Chinz now we need billions! The MEA is running around like headless chickens not knowing how to stop the Chinz.Imagine if it was India not China that was operating a port at HT with 15000 acres of an exclusive SEZ in SL for 99 yrs! That is thd great opportunity missed by our fancy mandarins and experts sipping their scotch at the Delhi Gym and the IIC.

To add salt to the wound, Rajapakse was thrown out by the Lankans and Sirisena and Ranil came in as Pres. and PM, a brilliant coup by CBK.India was overjoyed. Sirisena then made his first overseas visit to Delhi.But what did we do? We just happily thought that all was OK instead of rushing a team to SL to overturn the damage caused by Rajapakse and how it could be done with India's (financial) help.As an editorial put it very well today , reflecting on the West-Ru spat, India did and will do what it is famous for, " just wait and watch".
That's all that we've done since 2000 in our backyard tx to the Lutyens crowd.Sadly even this regime has not been pro- active enough but is following the typical MEA mantra of being reactive to events.


SL has many expectations from India that India simply cannot fulfill. We just don't have the financial bandwidth. We could perhaps assist in some JVs but that would involve SL actually putting some skin into the game which they are not willing to do.

All of their expectations involve India only GIVING and SL only RECEIVING.

All of India's neighbors are the same, including the pakis, neighbors, whose collective mantra has always been, you are bigger than us, you should act like a big brother and give us everything, even without us asking. We are free countries so we will continue to badmouth you because it is our right.

Nothing further to be gained from SL. Develop your own ports and undercut colombo. Cheeni bases in SL are always under Indian watch. We need to be cautious and not fearful because the SLs and the hans have left us with a fait accompli.

Nothing stops the SLs from legitimately reneging on the hambanthota agreement by conducting a national referendum and concluding that a rogue president, exceeded his democratic powers and entered into a corrupt deal with the hans, much to the detriment of the SL peoples. Do something other than the begging bowl route or face the consequences.

India is herself in a great state of flux and hence for us to forsake the needs of our own populace just to cater to outrageous and often greedy demands of nepal, beedis and the SLs is not possible.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Kashi » 28 Mar 2018 10:38

chetak wrote: Develop your own ports and undercut colombo.


+108

This is why getting Kolachel and/or Vizhinjan ports up and running is extremely crucial and perhaps this is why there are organised protests against these projects.

Someone DOES NOT want these two ports to come up.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby chetak » 28 Mar 2018 10:45

Kashi wrote:
chetak wrote: Develop your own ports and undercut colombo.


+108

This is why getting Kolachel and/or Vizhinjan ports up and running is extremely crucial and perhaps this is why there are organised protests against these projects.

Someone DOES NOT want these two ports to come up.


dot the i's and cross the t's and all will be revealed, no??

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 10:50

Ever hear of *Unfair treaty* trope trotted out by China on a regular basis. Sri Lanka can choose that route or straight away default on loans.

We must participate in the development of Sri Lanka but it must be on a commercially viable basis even do social projects as aid but No free handout for white elephants. We will help them as a friend but we must draw a line when they point a gun at their hear and in effect out head.

Let them get their handout from China. India can take care of the consequences.
Last edited by pankajs on 28 Mar 2018 10:51, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby abhik » 28 Mar 2018 10:50

Few years back we bailed out the SL cricket board, they gladly took our money and then immediately proceeded for a tour of pakiland (which we had cancelled) - of course it didn't end that well for the Lankans. We should avoid a repeat of the same on a larger scale now.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 28 Mar 2018 11:24

Colachel and Vizh ports will not flourish as we already have Cochin,Tuticorin established.Most southern TN transhipment is mainly though Tuticorin.Cochin next,MLR requires special skills if you know what i mean,say exporters! Of the two,Vizh. probably has better prospects but still requires a detour for vessels sailing from the Gulf or Suez Canal.The problem for exporters is that for the southern states,the Western Ghats makes it difficult to move goods by road and rail isn't that efficient.Ports further south from Cochin will be less attractive except for good being shipped to and from Kerala.On the eat coast,Chennai,and the ports in AP look after all shipping reqs. Perhaps a new port in TN on the south may in time develop,but there is no great industry outside the Chennai area.
Colombo is a very efficient port,better than our Southern ports and in a more direct line on the main SLOC to Spore and the Far East.Even vessels transiting the Suez canal via Aden would prefer to use Colombo than an Indian port. What we need to do though is to improve our fishing infrastructure,banning bottom trawling an sinking old vessels close to the shore at selected points to be fish breeding grounds. Using fast ferries,Ro_ro vessels at these ports will help its biz more than trying to slice another piece of cake from the Indian ports ration,whose size will not increase as expected.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Kashi » 28 Mar 2018 11:55

Philip wrote:Colachel and Vizh ports will not flourish as we already have Cochin,Tuticorin established.Most southern TN transhipment is mainly though Tuticorin.Cochin next,MLR requires special skills if you know what i mean,say exporters! Of the two,Vizh. probably has better prospects but still requires a detour for vessels sailing from the Gulf or Suez Canal.The problem for exporters is that for the southern states,the Western Ghats makes it difficult to move goods by road and rail isn't that efficient.Ports further south from Cochin will be less attractive except for good being shipped to and from Kerala.On the eat coast,Chennai,and the ports in AP look after all shipping reqs. Perhaps a new port in TN on the south may in time develop,but there is no great industry outside the Chennai area.
Colombo is a very efficient port,better than our Southern ports and in a more direct line on the main SLOC to Spore and the Far East.Even vessels transiting the Suez canal via Aden would prefer to use Colombo than an Indian port. What we need to do though is to improve our fishing infrastructure,banning bottom trawling an sinking old vessels close to the shore at selected points to be fish breeding grounds. Using fast ferries,Ro_ro vessels at these ports will help its biz more than trying to slice another piece of cake from the Indian ports ration,whose size will not increase as expected.


It's not about the efficiency of Colombo or the transocean traffic from Europe to the Far East. It's about a large chunk of Indian imports and exports being transhipped from Colombo. One of the prime reasons for this is lack of suitable Indian port to handle very large carriers. Looking at the map, Colachel is not that far from the international shipping lanes and once it comes up, at least we can avoid routing our inbound and outbound cargo from Colombo and save on these transit fees.

The infrastructure bits can always be augmented. The port can be connected to NH-44 and to the proposed North-South DFC. In the meantime, it can still used to ship our inbound cargo to other ports both on the East and West coast of India.

This is only about reducing OUR dependency on Colombo port.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 28 Mar 2018 12:03

As a transshipment port nothing needs to change except the hub shifts from Colombo to Colachel while the spokes remain the same ports of India. The goods are unloaded from a large ship and then loaded back on smaller ships and sent out again. For that specific role lack of connectivity to the hinterland shouldn't even be an issue. The rest of the argument is just to muddy the issue.

Anything else is added bonus i.e its role in the development of Tamilnadu.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby chetak » 28 Mar 2018 13:16

pankajs wrote:As a transshipment port nothing needs to change except the hub shifts from Colombo to Colachel while the spokes remain the same ports of India. The goods are unloaded from a large ship and then loaded back on smaller ships and sent out again. For that specific role lack of connectivity to the hinterland shouldn't even be an issue. The rest of the argument is just to muddy the issue.

Anything else is added bonus i.e its role in the development of Tamilnadu.



Philip saar is very right about the ingrained efficiencies of the colombo port as well as its undoubted locational advantages.

They not only turn ships around faster but are also much cleaner in terms of robust infrastructure, much reduced hafta, thefts and labor militancy which is, unfortunately, our inherent bane.

Be that as it may, we cannot allow ourselves to be played by the SLs.

It has been a long time since foolish, venal and self serving TN politicians have influenced our foreign relations and that the way it is going to stay. The dravidians have effectively corralled themselves by practicing such divisive politics. The centre has also become very much stronger than it was during the ltte days.

It is to be noted that not one TN politico has appreciated the impact of the economic dangers to India, especially to TN and KER, of having the voracious hans so close by with the ability to ship containers of useless stuff past our ever greedy customs and into the various "burma" bazaars of India.

But still, there is no harm in developing our own port infrastructure and connectivity, if only just to break the coastally entrenched anti India BIF lot, and revolutionalize the movement of freight via the water routes.

There will be some outward manifestations of the virtual han occupation of SL and the inevitable flood of cheeni goods. The SLs have a very robust industrial infrastructure with the widespread ability to machine really intricate parts for export. Many of their companies have got the permission to ship such parts directly to the assembly lines in the EU, meaning that they are responsible for their own inspections, inspections that are trusted by their EU customers, including those in the aviation business.

The hans would be looking to undercut such businesses and take it over for themselves.

SL is in for some very interesting times.

Here is an old article

https://www.forbes.com/sites/wadeshepard/2017/01/21/india-tells-sri-lanka-take-your-trincomalee-deep-sea-port-and-shove-it/#7aada5985f88

Asia #ForeignAffairs

JAN 21, 2017

India Tells Sri Lanka: You Can Take Your Port And Shove It




Wade Shepard , CONTRIBUTOR

Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.
Last Wednesday, January 18th, Sri Lanka's minister for regional development, Sarath Fonseka, told journalists at a conference in New Delhi that terms were being discussed to give Sri Lanka’s northeastern Trincomalee port to India. Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe reportedly vouched for the veracity of the remarks on the sidelines of Davos. But by Friday India was denying them, stating that they had no interest in taking on a fledgling port that wouldn't be profitable for a very long time.

Sri Lanka, an island nation at a strategic location in the Indian Ocean, has gotten into the habit of offering its sea ports to larger economic powers who have the financial clout to properly develop them. The talk about Trincomalee port being developed by India was intended to be a geopolitical counterbalance to Sri Lanka recently handing over of 80% of its Hambantota port to China for 99 years -- a move which New Delhi wasn't particularly enamored with.

Sri Lanka is currently attempting to stem the momentum of becoming viewed as a Chinese outpost of progress. In addition to the new Hambantota port going to China, plans are underway for China to be given a long-term lease on 15,000 acres of land in Hambantota for an industrial zone, a $1.4 billion, 269-hectare new financial district is being built by a Chinese company with Chinese money in Colombo (110 hectares of which will be granted to China for 99 years), and Colombo’s South Container Terminal is a 35-year Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) arrangement with China Merchants Holdings, the same company that's taking over the Hambantota port. In addition to this, China currently owns over $8 billion of Sri Lanka's debt, putting the country at its mercy to an even higher degree.


Being located right next to one another and sharing common historical ties, Sri Lanka and India have always enjoyed close political and economic relations. However, this close relationship has recently been getting strained, as Sri Lanka's buddying up with China has not sat well with New Delhi, who feels their influence in their own region waning as China encroaches on all sides with major development projects in Bangladesh, Myanmar, the Maldives, and Pakistan, in addition to Sri Lanka.

For China, Sri Lanka is a vital part of its broader international ambitions. The island nation is strategically positioned right between China and its Middle Eastern energy suppliers, and has been positioned as a key financial, administrative, and logistical hub on China’s 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, which seeks to build a string of Chinese-directed maritime operations from Asia to Europe.



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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby anupmisra » 28 Mar 2018 16:18

According to a paki newspaper, apparently the "big tent land sale where everything must go" is on in "siri lanka". Pakis should be the first ones to know. Lankans are looking for a $1.0 Billion in loans. I wonder which tract of land owned by the Rajapaksa family is up for grabs now?

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Supratik » 28 Mar 2018 23:23

Why should India invest in unviable projects even if it is worth only hundreds of millions? This is a clear case of corruption by Rajpakse. If he wanted to develop a port he could have just invited international bids and asked India to participate. Secondly, unlike China where govt owns most companies India does only govt-to-govt aids or loans. Did SL ask for such assistance? I am not aware of it. India is being unnecessarily blamed for this.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 29 Mar 2018 09:15

Hundreds of millions was for viable projects, not $8B owed to the Chins of which Rajapakse's cut will be around $4B! There are heaps of good deals in SL.A major player rues the day his Chin head of a division stopped the purchase of a valuable Colombo asset I had identified, now worth 30 times its then value...not too long ago.The Chin head, a woman , I am now convinced,was obviously a Chin intel operative, sabotaging Indian investment there.Every time we meet he asks about it.The owners now have no intention of selling.

Anyone seriously interested in SL, you know where 2 look!

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 29 Mar 2018 11:08

We must participate in viable project but stay away from white elephants like Hambantota. If we agree on this bit then I don't understand the angst over the last couple of pages.

Now if for these viable projects China wins in a fair and transparent bidding or is awarded to China without bidding just shrug and move on. Look for other opportunities in Sri Lanka or look elsewhere.

The decision tree is pretty simple when we come down to it.

1. White elephants - Thanks but no thanks.
2. Viable projects - We are interested
2a. Transparent competitive bidding > Indian companies win > Great!
2b. Transparent competitive bidding > Chinese win > Shrug and move on.
2c. Awarded to Chinese without bidding > Shrug and move on BUT let Sri Lanka know that this is unfair and counter productive. To that extent GOI should be involved.

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 29 Mar 2018 12:25

As far as India's security is concerned,not simple commercial interests,where a fair win is OK,there can be noncompromise.If certain deals inpinge upon our security,as the planned Chinese research naval station in the Maldives,whose purpose is to gain data for the Chin sub fleet,etc.,there can be only one end.India stops such activities any which way.read out the riot act to the neighbour concerned and believe you me,there are umpteen ways of skinning the Lankan Lion or the Maldivian tadpole.The hard truth is that there is a smugness and arrogance in South Block when it comes to dealing with neighbours. I know this for a fact. Neighbours resent this attitude very much,which is why we've lost Lanka,Nepal,the Maldives and are treading water in BDesh and Burma.Even a straightforward deal in the Seychelles for a naval facility on an uninhabited island has gone sour! Indian diplomacy has little finesse. Secondly,we have not been sending our best diplomats to the neighbouring countries which was not done before.JN Dixit served as envoy in Pak,Lanka and if I'm not mistaken either Bdesh or Nepal too.He was our NSA and sadly had an untimely death.Lankans described him as India's "Viceroy" ,in both criticism but also in awe,as during the IPKF period,where his rule writ hard.It was also the practice long ago of sending some of our top mil. chiefs as ambassadors/HCs.Adm.Dawson was sent to NZ as HC. Others posted as Govs. in sensitive states.One relative a top cop,was offered a few times the ambassadorship to Bonn,but his stupid sour-puss wife twice prevented him from taking it up.He was also offered the job of heading Interpol,shot down by the missus. ABV also sent a VCNS to read the riot act out to the LTTE ,on behalf of the GOSL which wanted a "navy" status for the Sea Tigers during a ceasefire period in SL.The GOI must appoint more military men as envoys to crucial states,while the Ist. Min. at the embassy/HC ,who runs the show,can be a career diplomat familiar with dpl. protocol,etc.Every embassy /HC should have at least one mil. attache of the rank of Capt. (IN),Col.(IA,or Gp.Capt.(IAF) ,Moe important countries with whom we have much mil. biz,should have representation from all 3 services of rank of Brig.,Cmde. and Air Cmde. Our intel should also be hugely beefed up but those details best not discussed. While this may be happening,the numbers should be enlarged.The Chins are everywhere in every country worth anything ,scooping up anything that they can get.

These days we just "wait and watch" and protest patting ourselves on the back that we've given X,Y,or Z a "befitting reply"!

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby pankajs » 29 Mar 2018 13:21

Philip wrote:These days we just "wait and watch" and protest patting ourselves on the back that we've given X,Y,or Z a "befitting reply"!

Exactly what Mr. Putin did after taking change of Russia in 2000. Just check how many of his neighbors switched sides after 2000.

Didn't Mr. Putin try "any which way" to stop the defection? Didn't Mr. Putin "read out the riot act to the neighbour concerned"? Didn't Mr. Putin try " umpteen ways of skinning the Lankan Lion or the Maldivian neighboring tadpole"?

If matters were so simple then the soup-baba Mr. Putin of a soup-pawa Russia would not be left talking of "countermeasures targeting NATO sites". Is that the "befitting reply" you are thinking of?

Where does that leave Mr. Putin in your opinion?

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Re: Sri Lanka - News and Discussion

Postby Philip » 29 Mar 2018 13:48

Ha!Ha! Get your facts right.Putin didn't "wait and watch',he acted with extreme prejudice.
He first dealt with domestic matters,nearer at home.He read the riot act out to the oligarchs who with their western robber barons were looting and scooting.They fled to the west,esp. London,who welcomed them and their loot with open arms!

he then reformed the Russian military,which is now nearly back to its Cold War strength in a concerted and 24X& focussed effort at strengthening Russia's strat. deterrent with new BMs,SSBNs,etc.

A tinpot Georgian dictator,who fled his country in disgrace to the UKR and has now fled from there too to Poland,asinenely ratt;led his sabre at Russia over a tiny enclave.he went to war with Russia and got his backside rogered in style.South Ossetia and Abkhazia are now independent entities and Shaky-Willy's become an international refugee!

NATO,defeated in Georgia,where it had supported its ally to the hilt,then attempted by devious means,using EU politicians on the ground,the US Veep,Biden and son,to grab the UKR entirely overthrowing the pro-Russian president of the UKR by staging a false flag massacre in the Kiev Maidan.The prs. had to flee as the fascist "Right Sector" neo-naxis ran riot and the UKR armed forces rounded up to try and wrest the eastern half of the country,which speaks Russian to come under its jackboot.Unfortunatey for them,with a little help from Putin,pro-Russian militias in the east stopped the UKR forces in their tracks inflicting upon them very heavy casualties.To make matters worse,the strategic Crimea (through a referendum) and key naval base at Sevastopol,returned to Mother Russia,while the western half of the UKR,run by neo-Nazi fascist pigs is in acute political turmoil,enmshed in corruption and chaos.It is only a matter of time before the entire UKR returns to Russia.watch this space!

But Putins' greatest achievement has been to exterminate ISIS in Syria,strengthening the Assad regime,and dealing a devastating blow to the US and Saudi backed "rebel' forces of mercenaries and Islamic fundoos.They are in full retreat,escaping with their lives in US brokered deals for their safety no less! He has secured a long-lease of the strat. naval base in Syria at Tartus,puls the Hen. air base too and has neutered the Ottoman would-be-Sultan,who has started anti-western rants from time to time.

But then the sponsors and creators of ISI is no great secret as the Saudi Crown prince has told the WPost in an interview,that "Wahaabiism" was promoted at the behest of the West during the Cold War! read the details in this Washington Post interview excpts here:

Spread of Wahhabism was done at request of West during Cold War – Saudi crown prince
Published time: 28 Mar, 2018 https://www.rt.com/news/422563-saudi-wa ... countries/

So much for Putin "watching and waiiting"! :rotfl:

PS: And if you believe British and Western propaganada that Putin was responsible for the poisoning of Skripal and Litvinenko earlier,wow! he hasn't spared Russian traitors wherever they may have gome to ground,just like the Mossad! Hats off to him if he did it.
Can you imagine ANY GOI doing the same,eliminating Indian traitors and scumbags who've scaped to firang lands,esp. London? Would Dawood and Co. still be alive if they'were fleeing from either Russia or israel? Would Mallya,Modi and Modi too not be quaking in their boots-like other Ru oligarchs who stole their nation's money? Some of these oligarchs also died in controversial circumstances.If Putin was responsible-which i seriously doubt, he truly livs up to his erstwhile reputation as a KGB officer,Russia's equiv . to a fictional James Bond!

PPS: Sirisena has clipped Ranil W's wings by removing two key portfolio's from him handing them to Mangala S.,who was formerly in the SLFP.he is trying to sow discord between Mangala and Ranil.MS is a popular leader esp. with the youth,though his own once youthful figure is now w thing of the past! Further tremors likely.,with Pakse-Raja stirring the pot.
Last edited by Philip on 29 Mar 2018 14:16, edited 3 times in total.


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