Sunday, December 11, 2011

Sri Lankan officials following 'innovative' tactics to convert Hambanthota a harbour

Sri Lanka now has a new harbor though no ships go there even an year after its grand opening. Harbor mouth was blocked by a rock. A large sum of borrowed foreign currency was spent to break the rock. It could be removed at a lower cost before hurriedly filling in water.

After all, the port is ready now. However, 'innovative' thinking is needed to lure ships there.

Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) says now that it will permit car importers to unload their cargo only in the Hambantota Port from March 2012.

Sources say that this measure will be followed due to Colombo Port is highly congested, since it has less parking facilities after the ongoing expansion of roads and due to less port terminals.

There is no space for parking and the car carriers have to wait for nearly five to six days to clear their cargo before leaving the area, says Ports Authority Chairman.

However, if the dealers want their cars to be shipped to the Colombo Port they have to arrange for ‘direct delivery’ and have the preliminary inspection at their own yard and not at the port, according to the Chairman of the Ports Authority.

Sri Lanka's vehicle business is centered in Colombo, Kandy and Kurunegala. Therefore the imported vehicles will have to go a long way to reach the market. Perhaps the government wants to shift the market also to Hambanthota. It will affect Kurunegala. Who cares Kurunegala now? Now it is Hambanthota time.

The imported vehicles will also add into the traffic of the newly built Southern Expressway.

This is the 'development' the government is giving us. Who benefits from it? Definitely not the poor masses of whose name the massive loans are being obtained.

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