Sri Lanka customs opens cargo inspection facility

May 06, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s customs department opened a new container inspection facility just outside Colombo near the port which senior officials said would help speed up examination of cargo. The facility, at a sprawling warehouse complex of the government food department next to the railway line, was built by a private firm, Rank Container Terminals, a part of Sri Lanka’s Rank Holdings group which has interests in gaming, power and logistics.

“This fulfils a long-felt need of the Customs department. It is a one-stop shop for clearing import cargo,” said Sarath Jayatilake, director general of Sri Lanka Customs.

“We lacked a fully-fledged customs container inspection terminal. Till now customs officials have been doing inspections in different places under difficult conditions outside the port, even at the premises of importers.”

The new facility, which will also have equipment to scan containers, will help improve international trade facilitation and enhance government revenue, he said Wednesday.

He said Customs has joined with other connected agencies like the Board of Investment the government’s investment promotion agency, food and health authorities and the standards in