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Proposal for Operation and Bunkering Facility at Port of Hambantota

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Wednesday, June 19, 2019
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 Hambantota bunker fuel terminal to open in October
 

Sri Lanka will start operations at the 82,000 ton capacity fuel bunkering terminal of its new Hambantota port in October, 16 months later than the original schedule, the ports authority said.

The state-run Sri Lanka Ports Authority had originally planned to open the facility for full operational bunkering in May 2011.

The $130 million project contains eight tanks of bunkering oil and six tanks of aviation fuel and LPG in the initial stage.

“We got the license on Wednesday. We are now in the process of buying test products. It might take three months to start, so it will be in October,” Priyath Wickrama, chairman of the authority told Reuters.

Last year Wickrama said the authority wanted to operate the facility fully rather than opening it partially.

Hambantota bunkering capacity could be expanded to 4 million metric tonnes if demand picks up. The bunkering operation is the only part of the port not open to external investment.

China Exim Bank has loaned $77 million toward the cost of the terminal, which the ports authority will operate. China has loaned Sri Lanka the bulk of the money to build the $1.5 billion port.

Hambantota, which opened in November 2010, is set to be Sri Lanka’s biggest port once the second phase is completed and to give the Indian Ocean country access to traffic on one of the world’s biggest East-West shipping lanes, located a few kilometres off its southern coast.

(FT16072012)

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