Sailing Offshore

Feb. 06 (LBO)-Sri Lanka’s only commercial ship building and repair firm Colombo Dockyards Limited (CDL) plans to invest over Rs. 660 million to upgrade infrastructure in order to lure new business and face up to competition from India. The investment spread over 2005 and 2006 is expected to improve CDL’s profitability, especially from its shipbuilding operation, which accounts for 60 percent of its turnover.

Year end 2005 turnover was at about Rs. 6.0 billion, up from Rs. 4.7 billion in 2004, CDL officials said Monday.

CDL Managing Director and Chief Executive Mangala Yapa said we are expanding our Ship repair and shipbuilding capacity, to the best possible extent… an old dry-dock is expanded to accommodate beamier (wider) vessels and new equipment are introduced…”

Yapa said the most significant development for the firm has been the internationalisation of the shipbuilding industry.

“Securing seven shipbuilding orders from the Middle East, within a year indeed was itself an achievement.”

The ship builder’s order books currently carry orders for three Tug Boats for Saudi Arabia and two 40 metre and 35 metre aluminium vessels for the Government of Maldives.

However, Yapa said India is moving ah