Govt. in big push for Hambantota

Massive business plan worth billions gets cabinet approval, committees appointed to call tenders, phase I to be completed by April 2011  
The Hambantota port is gearing up to greet the New Year with a massive investment plan worth billions as the government prepares to call proposals for business ventures that could be undertaken in the first phase of the project.
Cabinet approval has already been given for the appointment of a Project Committee (PC) and a Cabinet appointed Negotiating Committee to call for proposals for Private Public Partnerships (PPPs) for a host of business ventures that have been earmarked for implementation in phase I of the Hambantota Port Project.
Accordingly cement grinding and bagging plants, two fertiliser bagging plants, a vehicle assembling point, warehousing complex, LPG plant, operation of RO-RO terminals, ship repair facilities, operation of non-containerised cargo terminals and any other services necessary for the functioning of the port have been listed.

Enterprise Development and Investment Promotion Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa said last week that Cabinet approval was given for the appointment of the Project Committee and Negotiating Committee so that they could call tenders, evaluate proposals and negotiate with bidders for the bulk of the large construction projects. He noted that steps have already been taken to lay the groundwork for calling of proposals for business ventures on Hambantota port development project.
"The plan is to identify business ventures that can be undertaken as the first phase of the Hambantota port project. The government expects to have the business plan that was put together by the Ports Authority in action as early as possible and complete the construction work of phase I by April 2011," he said adding that construction of the Hambantota port was progressing smoothly.
The Minister pointed out that this was another step taken to implement development programmes under the Mahinda Chinthanaya and would result in unprecedented economic growth for the nation. Yapa remarked that parallel to the Hambantota port four other ports including Colombo, Galle, Oluvil and Trincomalee were due for expansion.

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