Chinese firm to build $1.4 bln Sri Lanka city complex

COLOMBO, July 24, 2013 (AFP) – Sri Lanka has finalized a deal with a Chinese company to build a $1.4 billion city complex on reclaimed land near the harbour of the capital Colombo, an official said Wednesday. The state-run Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) will reclaim 230 hectares (568 acres) next to the new Colombo South port, said SLPA chairman Priyath Bandu Wickrama.

He said the SLPA finalised a deal under which China Communications Construction Company Limited (CCCC) will invest $1.43 billion to build a “Port City” that will change the coastline in the capital.

“We are moving towards the sea to reclaim land and build a mini city,” Wickrama said during a visit to the port.

“We have finalised the deal with CCCC and construction will begin by September. We hope to complete the land reclamation within 39 months,” he added, without saying when the deal was struck.

He said the SLPA planned a new 22-floor headquarters, hotels, apartments and recreational activities on the reclaimed land. The CCCC will be given 50 hectares (123 acres) of the land on a 99-year lease.

Several international hotels, including Hong Kong-based Shangri La are building hotels in Sri Lanka to cash in on the island