Setting Sail

Dec 18, 2006 (LBO) – Sri Lanka's President Mahinda Rajapakse Monday kicked off a million dollar project to expand the Colombo port, which will triple existing capacity and enable it to service larger vessels in the future.

The 1.2 billion dollar project, the largest port development undertaken so far, will add four terminals, each with four berths to existing facilities, the Sri Lanka Ports Authority said.

Each terminal would be 1,200 metres in length and have between three to four berths.

An artists impression of the Colombo port expansion plan (Source: SLPA)

"The first terminal will become operational in 2010 and have a nominal capacity of 2.4 million TEUs (Twenty-foot Equivalent Units), with the others being brought on-line as the market demands it," the Sri Lanka Ports Authority said.

To accommodate deeper vessels, the harbor basin will be deepened to 18 metres while the channel carrying the vessels will

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