Sri Lanka gets Chinese funds for infrastructure development

April 17, 2008 (LBO) – The Chinese government has already allocated over 700 million dollars to build infrastructure in Sri Lanka with talks on for more money to fund expressways, a port and coal power plants, a government official said Thursday. A government delegation that visited China in April was able to secure more funding for Sri Lanka’s infrastructure projects while Chinese companies expressed interest in investing in the island, G. L. Peiris, minister of export development and international trade said.

China has already allocated 455 million dollars for a coal power project in northwestern Puttalam and Sri Lanka is negotiating a further 400 million dollars for its second and third phases, Peiris told reporters.

He did not say whether the funds came as aid or commercial loans.

The work on the coal plant in Puttalam on the coast is already underway and is scheduled to be completed in 2011.

The Chinese have already made available 307 million dollars to build a breakwater and for excavation for a new port in southern Hambantota, closed to the international shipping route.

Negotiations were underway for the second phase of Hambantota port to put up an oil tank farm and bunkering (ship fuel) facility costing 75 million