Port City talks before April 7
Negotiations between the government and the Chinese investor of the
US $ 1.4 billion Colombo Port City project will be finalised before
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe leaves for China on April 7 to
launch the project under an amended agreement, Secretary to the
Megapolis and Western Region Development Ministry, Nihal Rupasinghe told
the Sunday Observer.
He said negotiations are now under way with the Chinese investor,
China Communication Construction Company (CCCC) on the original
agreement that has to be re-negotiated and amended.
The Secretary said a committee consisting of government officials are
continuing discussions with the Chinese investor to finalise
negotiations before April 7.
“The key components that are under negotiation are the duration of
the leasing period and also the extent of land to be reclaimed for the
project,” he said.
Compensation for delaying the project is also under negotiation at
present and it will be included in the amendment agreement.
When official negotiations are completed, the report will be
presented to the Ministerial Committee for approval and then to the
Cabinet for its final approval.
Environment clearance for the project was granted, subject to 72
conditions and the Chinese investor agreed to implement the project
adhering to these conditions,” he said.
A senior official of the Coast Conservation Department(CCD) said
conditional environmental clearance was granted for projects giving
guidelines when implementing the project.
The key issues that were raised by the CCD and the Coastal Resources
Department, the approving agency of environmental clearance for the
project, had stipulated that prior approval should be sought from
President Maithripala Sirisena to reclaim the sea bed.
“Development should include that fishing and fish diversity should
not be disturbed by the project,” he said.
The China Harbour Engineering Company, the project company for the
Colombo Port City on behalf of the China Communications and Construction
Company this week endorsed the Government’s announcement on the
implementation of the project which was suspended for one year by the
government, pending environment clearance and renegotiating the