A senior diplomat and former President of  China Institute of International Studies Qi Zhenhong is the new Ambassador-designate of China to Sri Lanka.

He arrived in the country last night to assume duties, the Chinese Embassy in Colombo said.

Ambassador -designate Qi took the unusual step of issuing  an “open message’ to Sri Lankan upon his arrival.

“He issued an open message to #SriLankan and expects to assume his office after 2-week quarantine,” the Chinese Embassy said on its official Twitter handle.

In it, Qi said that as the new Ambassador of the People’s Republic of  China,  he looks forward to working with all friends and colleagues from Sri Lanka and China

“Let us join hands to implement the consensus reached by leaders of our two countries, promote our strategic  cooperative partnership,  build the Belt and Road Initiative and other cooperation  with extensive consultation and joint contribution, so as to bring tangible benefits to our two people and better ensure peace, stability, development and prosperity in this region," Qi said in the message.