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Sri Lanka Ports Authority launches Vision 2020 the Corporate Plan towards logistics excellence in the Silk Route


Vision 2020 - the corporate plan of Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) was  launched  at a ceremonial function held at the Hilton Hotel in Colombo on 30th July 2013. The first copy of the corporate plan was handed over to Hambantota District Hon.Parliamentarian Namal Rajapaksa  by the Chairman of SLPA Dr.Priyath B. Wickrama. SLPA launches the corporate plan with the theme of 'Logistics Excellence in the Silk Route'. Hon.Minister of Port and Highways Rohitha Abegunawardane, Badulla District Hon.Parliamentarian Udith Sanjaya Lokubandara, Secretary of the Ministry of Port and Highways - Ranjith Pemasiri, Govern of the Central Bank – Mr.Ajith Nivad Cabral, Managing Director of SLPA - Capt.Nihal Keppetipola, Senior Management and staff members of SLPA, A number of distinguished foreign guests and shipping community also participated at the event.

The logistics industry is expanding rapidly in responds to the increasing demand of world trade. The robust trade, economic growth and liberalization policies followed by many Asian countries have resulted in increased trade volumes. Thus ensuing increase in transportation, handling and ware housing needs. This has laid to a demand for integrated logistics solutions in the region and around the world.

Ports and Airports will be the key nodes linking the global supply chain and the logistics services. Therefore, in Sri Lanka ports and airports will play a significant role in connecting the region to support the transshipment and value addition activities to connect South Asia to the rest of the world. The geographic location gives a comparative advantage to the country to be the gate way to Indian Subcontinent and to serve South and East Asia, Middle East and Africa on the main East West shipping route.

Ports play a significant facilitating role for the domestic cargo base of Sri Lanka. The positioning of the ports gives greater connectivity to local manufacturing sector to both export finish goods and to import raw material for production at competitive prices. To be in the forefront of competition, improving handling and logistics cost will give the country an added advantage.

More than 95% of world's merchandized cargo is transported by seaborne transportation. The global shipping industry has been evolving as more and more cargo is containerized and ship owners have been investing in mega ships to achieve economies of scale. This has laid to containerships ranging from 100 TEUs in the late 1950s to be developed into over 18,000 TEU mega ships by 2013. The introduction of these mega ships has consequences for shipping routes and seaport infrastructure.

In view of these developments, Sri Lanka too has had to invest large amounts of capital to develop its infrastructure to facilitate the requirements of modern ships as well as to increase the capacity of terminals and harbour basins to accommodate these ships. The Sri Lanka Ports Authority has given due consideration to the strategic forecasts in the global shipping trade. Therefore, action has been taken to develop ports around the country to serve the demands of various type of ships using the main East West shipping route.

Envisioning the future of Sri Lankan ports, SLPA is shifting its original thought of container hub to global logistics hub, expecting the boom in International trade that opens up a range of opportunities and challenges. SLPA accordingly, in its port vision to be the logistics excellence in the Silk Route expects to strengthen complex logistic approaches with 'one touch' information flow of all activities while sustaining the best practices at national and international level in order to improve overall economic conditions in Sri Lanka.

In its mission to deliver world class services in a sustainable environment, SLPA emphasizes on the thought of creating a global logistic hub port in Sri Lanka, expecting to construct a multi-dimensional logistics system to integrate logistics function while opening a deep water sea port with excellent maritime access that enables to receive large vessels and to operate them in modern specialized terminals.

Responding to the expected future growth of the port and the region, a modern port free of urban restrictions, thus assuring long term expansion capacity and an industrial and logistics zone of worldwide extent logistics platform that can receive the main players of port, maritime, industrial and logistic sectors is expected to be devised. While adhering to the highest standard of integrity, the port further assures to present economically efficient and environmentally sound intensive benefits and port services for port users and stakeholders. 

Accordingly, in its aspirations by 2020 SLPA expects to become the center for maritime excellence, handle 20 million tonnage of cargo, obtain a revenue of US$ 01 billion, invest US$ 10 billion as port investments within the ports, become the leading contributor to the national economy and to be a green port operator. Strategies to achieve the above aspirations include to develop infrastructure & super structure facilities in Colombo, consolidate the position of port of Colombo as a center of maritime excellence, introduce sector specific marketing & business development programme, develop Magam Ruhunupura Mahinda Rajapaksa Port (MRMR Port) as an international service, industrial & container handling port, enhance safety & security for cargo & port users, mark global presence in strategic locations, organization restructuring & re-designing administrative procedures, implementation of advance financial management systems, reduce carbon footprint, develop other regional ports as per their individual strengths and competitive advantages. Besides the strategies in this regard also include diversification of business activities, provision of facilities for oil and gas, efficient vessel oriental services as well as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

Aligning to the vision of the 'Mahinda Chintana Idiri Dekma' to transform Sri Lanka into strategically important economic center of the world, the Government of Sri Lanka has laid out a development policy frame work for short, medium and long term macroeconomic policies to address challenges and to make structural transformation of the economy for sustainable development. The new policy frame work is a turning point in Sri Lanka's economic development which is aimed at high growth rate, along with quantitative and qualitative output.

The highlights of the policy frame work of implementing large infrastructure development consist of mega projects of electricity generation, ports, airports, water supply, irrigation, roads, transport, revitalization of agriculture, domestic enterprises, enhancement of public service and promotion of private sector and the SMEs. These projects are directly envisaged to develop an economically, socially and environmentally sustainable country to the future generations of Sri Lanka.

The growth model fostered by the Government policies will result and economy with accelerated development along with environment sustainability. The objective is to create a stable society with a high quality of life by doubling the per capita income to above US$ 4000 through an annual economic growth of over 7-8 percent and to move into and upper middle income nation in the short term. Moreover, the policy emphasizes on investments to be increased to 33-35 percent GDP and exports to be grown at twice the rate or more of real GDP. Further it is expected to promote tourism, to decrease the share of rural poverty and unemployment and to increase the share of urban population of the country.

The Government is taking pragmatic policy decision to create the necessary economic conditions to strategically position Sri Lanka as a Maritime, Aviation, Commercial, Energy and a Knowledge Hub.

Sri Lanka Ports Authority
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Colombo 01, Sri Lanka.
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