Why do Chung and Ranil meet frequently?

151014-N-GR120-152 INDIAN OCEAN (Oct. 14, 2015) The guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60) prepares to come along side for a fueling-at-sea with the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71). Theodore Roosevelt is operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations as part of a worldwide deployment en route to their new home port in San Diego to complete a three-carrier homeport shift. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Anna Van Nuys/Released)

The Colombo-based US ambassador  Julie J. Chung regularly meets President Ranil Wickramasigha, as political commentators point out among many reasons
Strategic interest in Indian Ocean security is definitely a key reason for these regular meetings.

Sri Lanka sits along the main east-west sea lanes in the Indian Ocean and is of strategic geopolitical interest to China, India, and the USA.

Pakistan Navy ship that arrived in Colombo port on Aug. 12TH and China’s Yuan Wang 5 ship, which arrived in Hambantota port on Aug. 16 has created a new wave of tensions

Financial Shrink of Sri Lanka
The financial shrink which is calculated at around eight percent will certainly limit Sri Lanka’s navel monitoring of its exclusive economic zone.

The capacity of the country’s navy will be constrained in conducting maritime security missions such as marine pollution response operations near busy Indian Ocean sea lanes, and prevention of illegal migration and human smuggling.

India, Australia, and other Indian Ocean countries will be worried as Sri Lankan refugees could be a real problem.

The USA  will be interested in
Protecting the free flow of commerce by securing safe passage for containers, bulk cargo, and hydrocarbon traffic that is critical for the global economy. The second

U.S. objective in the region is maintaining military access in the Indian Ocean.

exclusive economic zone
The  U.S. may expand its  Indian Ocean presence, and currently, the US is engaged in a naval training program with Sri Lanka.
Most likely the US will attempt to place itself in a position where it could have better control and more influence in the Indian Ocean.

Sri Lanka claims an exclusive economic zone extending 200 nautical miles, which is approximately 6.7 times Sri Lanka’s land area and the USA may look for an improved presence within this vast area by working with the SRI Lankan authorities.

The US may not allow the economic vulnerabilities of Sri Lanka to be exploited by China to an extent that it becomes a problem for its own Indian Ocean security strategy.


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