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India to grant US$ 61.5 million for the fully development of KKS port

By: Staff Writer

May 02, Colombo (LNW): Indian government has agreed to provide a grant of US$ 61.5 million to fully develop the Port of Kankesanthurai (KKS).

The Cabinet of Ministers at its meeting on Monday approved accepting of a financial grant from India to proceed with the renovation of the Kankesanthurai Port (KKS) in Jaffna.

Originally slated for implementation under the Indian credit facility, the project faced setbacks due to higher-than-expected costs estimated by consulting service agencies. Consequently, discussions were initiated with the Government of India to explore alternative funding options.

“Identifying the significance of the project, the Government of India has generously agreed to provide the entire estimated cost required for the renovation of the KKS port,” Cabinet Co-Spokesman and Minister Bandula Gunawardena said on Tuesday at the post-Cabinet meeting media briefing.

Given the setbacks faced by the project, further discussions m were held with the Government of India to explore the possibility of completing the project through a public-private partnership (PPP) model.

The move comes following a communiqué issued by the Ports, Shipping and Aviation Ministry in March, noting that the Government of India has pledged $ 61.5 million grant to fully develop KKS port in Jaffna (https://www.ft.lk/news/India-pledges-61-5m-grant-to-develop-KKS-Port/56-759703).

It added that the message was conveyed during a meeting between Indian High Commissioner Santosh Jha and Ports, Shipping and Aviation Minister Nimal Siripala De Silva.

“As part of the project, a new breakwater will be constructed and the port will be dredged up to a depth of 30 meters to accommodate deep-draft vessels,” it read.

Originally, on 2 May 2017, the Cabinet approved implementation of the KKS port renovation project under Indian loan funds, with further approval for Project Management Consultant Services given on 18 December 2019.

The proposal to this effect presented by the President Ranil Wickremesinghe in his capacity as the Finance, Economic Stabilisation and National Policy Minister received unanimous approval from the Cabinet of Ministers.

The Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Santosh Jha, says the Indian Government has agreed to provide a grant of USD 61.5 million to fully develop the Port of Kankesanthurai (KKS).

This was revealed during a recent meeting between . Minister of Ports, Shipping, and Aviation, Nimal Siripala de Silva, and the Indian High Commissioner at the Ministry office.

As part of the project, a new breakwater will be constructed, and the port will be dredged up to a depth of 30 meters to accommodate deep-draft vessels.

During the discussion, the Indian High Commissioner expressed India’s commitment to enhancing regional cooperation between the two nations and pledged the fullest assistance to attract more Indian tourists to Sri Lanka. He also stated that the Indian Government has designated Sri Lanka as the top travel destination for Indian tourists. Furthermore, the Minister mentioned the construction of a new terminal costing Rs. 600 million at the KKS port to cater to the convenience of Indian tourists.

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