Policy Breaks

April 22, 2009 (LBO) – Colombo Dockyard stands to benefit from several concessions being considered in the new draft Sri Lankan government shipping policy, industry officials said. “In the absence of any other local builder capable of meeting local demand, removing such a ceiling will be considered by government as otherwise it would only open the doors for importation from outside,” the policy said. The policy, being discussed by the shipping community, says obstacles preventing local ship owners using local repair services and facilities will be removed.

These relate to taxes charged on local ship owners if they get repairs done at Colombo Dockyard, a unit of Japan’s Onomichi Dockyard which has its yard in Colombo port.

The shipping policy says that with local ship ownership growing and being encouraged by government, it is necessary to encourage local ship owners to use local services and repair facilities.

However, it said, benefits are given to foreign flagged or owned vessels that are not afforded to locally owned vessels which causes the local vessels to use dry docking facilities abroad.

The draft shipping policy also says “suitable remedies” will be tak