Mar 11, 2010 (LBO) – The Export Import Bank of India is giving Sri Lanka 67.4 million US dollars in top funding in a project which will slash travel times along a coastal railway track, the finance ministry said. Rolling stock maintenance facilities will be built in Alutgama, Galle and Colombo. In 2008 India had given a 100 million US dollar credit line to start the first phase of the project costing 130 million dollars. The total project cost was 212.4 million US dollars, for which Sri Lanka’s government had to chip in with 45 million US dollars.
The track from Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo to the Southern town of Matara was damaged during the 2004 tsunami.
The rehabilitated track will be able to carry trains up to a maximum speed of 120 kilometres an hour and average speeds will double to 80 kilometres slashing travel times along the coastal track, the finance ministry said.
The finance ministry Sri Lanka’s state-run railway is buying 20 diesel multiple units, three locomotives and spare parts from India.