This will help to further strengthen the country’s effort to become a regional maritime hub in the near future.
The financing for this project comes as a line of credit from the Export-Import Bank of India (Exim Bank) and the Secretary to Treasury Dr. R.H.S. Samaratunga signed the agreement recently in New Delhi with David Rasquinha, Managing Director, Export-Import Bank of India to finance this project.
The Government of India is the major development partner of Sri Lanka in South Asian region over 40 years since 1973. During the last few years Indian foreign direct investment in Sri Lanka has expanded exponentially. Presently Indian development assistance mainly focusing on improvement of economic infrastructural facilities, livelihood development, education, healthcare, capacity building and economic renewal of Sri Lanka. In this persistence, both governments have inked a fresh Line of Credit (LOC) of USD 318 million for the development of railway sector in Sri Lanka in June 2017.
The Ministry of Ports and Shipping has identified that the Rehabilitation of Kankesanthurai (KKS) Harbour would contribute to promote traditional commercial linkages, both domestic and regional and give an incentive to economic activities by encouraging trade in northern Sri Lanka. Kankesanthurai will be the nearest port for all eastern ports in India, as well as for Myanmar and Bangladesh.
The Government, taking into account the above facts has decided to rehabilitate the KKS Harbour. Preliminary Hydrographic survey geotechnical investigation, preparation of Detail Project Report and Wreck removal and disposal dredging work have already been completed under grant assistance from the Government of India.
The fresh assistance of $45.27 million would be used for the remaining two phases involving works relating to the rehabilitation of the breakwater and existing pier. Construction of a new pier for commercial cargo handling, installation of port infrastructure facilities will also be undertaken under this credit line facility from India. The Sri Lanka Ports Authority under the supervision of the Ministry of Ports and Shipping will implement this Project.