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Funded by China, Sri Lanka's Colombo Lotus Tower declared open for public
Colombo: The Lotus Tower of Colombo which is funded by China and constructed under its Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) was declared open to the public on Thursday.
According to the Sri Lankan news agency, Newswire, the government had earlier announced that the Colombo Lotus Tower would be opened in three stages over the next few months of which the first stage of the Colombo Lotus Tower (also known as Nelum Kuluna), which was built for an estimated USD 113 million was opened to the public on Thursday. Major General (Retired) Prasad Samarasinghe, the Head of the Colombo Lotus Tower Management Company announced the opening of the structure.
The second stage of the Lotus Tower is expected to open in another 2 months and will include the opening of e-sports centres as well as a digital museum. In contrast, the third stage of the tower is set to be ready by March next year and will include the opening of a 9D cinema and a revolving restaurant, Newswire reported.
Apparently, the tower is spread over an area of 30,600 sq. metres and was constructed for over USD 100 million, 80 per cent of which was funded by China, as per Sri Lankan media reports.
The lotus tower is located in Colombo city and is a 350-metre-tall 17-storey structure.
Stating that the tower will be open from 2 pm to 10 pm on weekdays and 12 pm to 11 pm on weekends, while it will also be open for school tours at a special rate, Newswire reported.
Though the crisis in Sri Lanka was apparent after the pandemic that dried up the international tourist traffic to the island nation, one of its main foreign exchange-earners, the country's debts spiralled and foreign exchange reserves shrunk as the end result of reckless borrowings from China to finance infrastructure projects.
With tourism hit by the pandemic, the economic structure of Sri Lanka came down crumbling as the debt burden was a result of China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) projects like Hambantota Port and Colombo Port City for which Chinese agencies lent large amounts to Sri Lanka under stiff terms of repayment. (ANI)