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 Port Development with Public Private Partnerships
 


Under the topic of “Port Development with Public/Private Partnership” answering a question  at the forum ‘The Next Step; investment & Private Sector” organized   by  the ART TV held at the Hilton Hotel, Colombo on 31st March 2009 Capt. Nihal Keppetipola, Managing Director of Sri Lanka Ports Authority [SLPA] said that if the SLPA didn’t make an aggressive effort in dealing with shipping lines and the industry giving them hope and comfort at this period during the global economic down turn,   retaining shipping lines in Sri Lanka would be a difficult task.  Shipping lines in turn are discussing with the port authority on long term agreements giving due consideration  to the concessions offered.   Speaking about port development projects he said that SLPA must consider acting as the  land lord and being a regulatory body where services and related activities could be handled by public private participation.  Taking into consideration a global cargo volume growth, increasing sizes of vessels being built for sea transportation, enhanced logistics requirement in supply chain and most importantly for the next generation in the country, SLPA  had planned to develop several port projects. However, the economic down turn has raised a  question mark on the necessity on spending on  these  projects at a time like this.  He said that SLPA is working out a strategy in developing and enhancing infrastructure and super structure and also to go head with the projects so that the ports and the country will be geared to strengthen and facilitate the national transport infrastructure requirement [which is a part of the maritime transportation] thus benefiting the investors to ship/transport their building materials, raw materials, equipment etc., during the post war construction and development and also be ready to capture the growing demands of regional and global  trade requirements including accommodating mega vessels and with provide value added logistics as per the supply chain demand emerge  the global logistic hub in this region. Referring to a question on  the new RFP for the Colombo Harbour Expansion Project he said in fact this may be a good time to go for bidding, as the    contenders may come up with high royalty rates than the previous instance as the construction, transportation costs have dropped drastically.

Dr. Batagoda, Director General, Department of Public Enterprises spelt out the types of investment packages under the Public Private Partnership [PPP] concept  in detail. 

Mr. Nivard Cabral, Governor of the Central Band reiterated the necessity of the port development in spite of the economic down turn thus facilitation of smooth maritime transportation for the investors during the post war rebuilding of the nation. 

Hon. Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. Sarath Amunugama, Chairman of Board of Investment - Mr. Dhammika Perera, Director General of TRCSL - Mr. Priyantha Kariyapperuma and Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority Mr. Bernard Goonetilleke  also attended the occasion to address members of the business community in creating awareness and providing future government led plans for promoting investment.
(SLMPRD-01042009)

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