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Colossal sum invested for H'tota Sea Port construction - Arjuna

  - 'Will not be closed down'

A colossal sum had been invested for the construction of the Hambantota Sea Port and as such, there is no possibility of closing it down, Ports and Naval Minister Arjuna Ranatunga said.

Addressing a meeting that followed the inspection of the Hambantota Sea Port recently, the minister said he was planning to invite foreign investors to develop the sea port further.

Ranatunga said that when looking at the volume of work done at the Hambantota Sea Port, the expenditure incurred on it was colossal.

He said as the minister he will have to face problems due to contracts awarded to contractors for further development activities at this sea port.

The minister said he was planning to hold talks with banks that funded the construction work of the Hambantota Sea Port to reduce interest rates of the loans disbursed by these banks.

He said the Hambantota Sea Port is more or less a white elephant as such unnecessary expenditure must be brought to a minimum and it should be developed as a money spinner and an income generator.

Ranatunga said a committee chaired by the Prime Minister has already been appointed to probe the construction of the Colombo Port City, continuing the construction work or putting an end to the construction work of the Port City depending on the findings of the committee.

The minister said that they pledged before the elections that they we will never do anything that will cause destruction to the country in any way.

"We will not allow casinos to be constructed Sri Lanka. Sea ports in Sri Lanka were the highest income earners in the country but due to the unruly acts of then ministers and other top officials, these have become burdens to the country," Ranatunga said. 

(DN - 02022015)

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