- US $ 2bn oil refinery with the Chinese under negotiation
- A dockyard, cement factory, LNG plant in the pipeline
- 5mn acres in Southern Province identified for development
By Supun Dias
Hot on the heels of a proposed debt-to-equity deal with the Chinese for the Hambantota Port scheduled to be completed coming January, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday said negotiations are underway to bring in US $ 2 billion Chinese oil refinery to Hambantota.
“We are (also) going to bring in investments for a dockyard, a cement factory and an LNG plant in the Hambantota Port,” Wickremesinghe, addressing the cream of the country’s private sector during the Business Today Top 30 awards ceremony held to recognize the top private sector corporates in Sri Lanka, said.
“People are talking about 15,000 acres but we have identified around five million acres in the Southern Province excluding Yala and Bundala for development purposes,” he said.
“When we develop Sri Lanka, we should not look at the South Asian standards, we should focus on the ASEAN standards. That is important for us to be ahead and to achieve our market goals,” he added.
He said that within the next few years more than US $ 3 billion would come into Sri Lanka, as the country would be signing four free trade agreements (FTAs).
The prime minister also noted that investments will be made in key projects such as the South-West Corridor and with further plans to make a North-East Corridor to develop the area around Trincomalee, where plans for the development zones will be made in consultancy with the Singapore-based Subarna Jurong, which is known as Asia’s consultancy powerhouse for urbanization, industrial and infrastructure developments.
“I also want to point out that a number of local companies partnering with foreign investors have shown interest in the Eastern Terminal of the Colombo Port, I welcome that,” he noted