Wednesday, July 24, 2024

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Talaimannar pier to be reconstructed strengthening ties with India

By: Staff Writer

Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka government unveiled plans to reconstruct Talaimannar pier to facilitate passengers from Rameswaram, India in a bid to further improve people-to-people ties of both countries, Ports, and shipping ministry sources said.

The pier is set to be reconstructed after 37 years, with the project having an estimated cost of Rs. 1.8 billion.

This was a significant strategic move designed to strengthen ties between Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh.

The intention is to streamline and foster people-to-people connections between the two nations, thereby nurturing bilateral relations.

The renovation of the pier coincides with a broader scope of plans, which includes the acquisition of approximately 10 acres of state-owned land adjacent to the port.

This acquisition will pave the way for the development of pertinent infrastructural projects, underscoring the country’s commitment to bolstering cross-border ties.

The Ministry statement disclosed that in parallel to the pier’s revamp, the development of a modern passenger terminal and warehouse facility would be a part of the scheme.

To facilitate these projects, requests for proposals will be solicited under a public-private partnership framework.

It’s notable that India has already finished enhancements to the Rameswaram Port and has been given the green light to inaugurate a passenger ferry service between Mannar and Rameswaram.

Nimal Siripala de Silva, the subject minister, paid an inspection visit to the Talaimannar Pier on Friday, August 4th.

During this visit, he stressed the importance of the pier’s development as a critical component in the strengthening of interpersonal connections between the neighboring nations.

In his statement, de Silva emphasized, “For this purpose, we need to repair the pier. This is a benefit we aim to provide to the people of the North and East, funded by the earnings from the Port of Colombo.

He noted that he firmly believes that the implementation of this project will yield numerous advantages”.

 He added that this initiative is a testament from President Ranil Wickremesinghe to ensure equitable treatment across the North and South regions.

 Issuing a statement in this regard, the Ministry revealed that parallel to the reconstruction of the pier, nearly 10 acres of state-owned land bordering the port will be acquired for the development of relevant infrastructure.

It was also highlighted that a modern passenger terminal and a warehouse facility will also be constructed.

Accordingly, requests for proposals to carry out these developments will be called for under a private-public partnership, the Ministry noted, adding that India has completed developments at the Rameswaram Port, and clearance has been declared to commence a passenger ferry service between Mannar and Rameswaram.

This is a benefit we are going to give from the money we earned from the port of Colombo to the people of the North and East. 

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