Ten companies from China, Korea, India and Malaysia have given proposals with financing to build the road.
"We are studying these proposals," he said. "We are hoping to start building the expressway this year."
The RDA opened an expressway to Galle in the South last year, which is operating as a toll road slashing travel time by about a third.
At the moment, the road from Colombo to Kandy is considered a key bottleneck, slowing traffic to Kandy, north central Sri Lanka and the east.A World Bank study has found that congestion in Colombo, and on the Colombo-Kandy road was a key reason for high transport costs in the island, as road elsewhere in the island improved.