China's space-tracking ship Yuanwang-5 has docked at Sri Lanka's Hambantota International Port (HIP) for replenishment purposes.
Chinese Ambassador to Sri Lanka Qi Zhenhong, Sri Lankan government officials and representatives of Chinese enterprises greeted the ship at the pier on Tuesday.
Qi told the welcoming ceremony that the Hambantota port is a key cooperation project between China and Sri Lanka under the Belt and Road Initiative. The visit of Yuanwang-5 after sailing for more than 30 days shows that the traditional friendship between China and Sri Lanka is deep-rooted and everlasting, said the ambassador.
The Sri Lankan president's representative Sarath Weerasekera said that the relationship between Sri Lanka and China has a long history and he believes that the call of Yuanwang-5 on Sri Lanka would help consolidate and strengthen the traditional friendly relations between the two countries.
In his welcome speech, Liu Enhuai, chief executive officer of Hambantota International Port Group and chief representative of China Merchants Group in Sri Lanka, said that as an international gateway port, the Hambantota port has always welcomed and been committed to providing professional services to vessels of all countries.
Zhang Hongwang, captain of Yuanwang-5, said that Yuanwang-5 is on a maritime tracking mission with the long-term control task for Wentian, a lab module of China's space station.