Despite rising international concern over the deteriorating human conditions in Sri Lanka, the UK has outpaced China as a direct investor into the Sri Lanka economy.
Based on data by the Board of Investment (BOI), a Sri Lankan agency tasked with promoting long-term investments, the UK accounted for the majority of foreign direct investment (FDI) in 2020, accounting for 24% whilst China only accounted for 12%.
Sri Lanka’s Central Bank has reported US $ 548 million in total FDI in the nine months to September 2020, compared to US $ 793 million in the same period in 2019. $311 million was invested into infrastructure; $157 million into manufacturing; and $86 million in services.
The Daily Mirror reports that Nathaniel Rothschild, British-born financier, and a member of the Rothschild family, visited Sri Lanka in January of this year to explore the country’s suitability as a manufacturing base for an electronics venture.
This report comes as the British government is facing harsh opposition for its weak leadership at the UN Human Rights Council with respect to the proposed UN resolution as well as the failure to impose sanctions on Sri Lankan officials implicated in human rights abuses.