Dec 16, 2011 (LBO) – Construction work has begun on the first deep-water container terminal in a new harbour being built next to Sri Lanka’s Colombo port that will be owned and operated by a Chinese-led consortium. The 500 million US dollar South Container Terminal is to be built and operated by Colombo International Container Terminals (CICT), a joint venture between China Merchants Holdings, Sri Lankan conglomerate Aitken Spence and Sri Lanka Ports Authority.
Sand filling work to build the terminal to berth ships was flagged off by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa Friday.
The new terminal will be capable of handling the latest container ships with a capacity of 10,000 containers which are too big to be docked at the existing Colombo port.
The first 600 metres of the South Container Terminal will be in operation in early 2014, the SLPA has said.
It will handle an estimated as 2.4 million containers and the entire terminal will be completed in 2016.
The China Merchants Holdings (International) will provide a shareholder loan facility up to 350 million dollars and the rest of the capital is to be raised by the shareholders equity.