South harbour to be best hub
The Colombo South Harbour Development Project, presently under
construction, would be positioned as the best transshipment cargo
handling hub in the South Asia region, Asian Development Bank (ADB)
Country Director Dr Richard Vokes said.
Dr Richard Vokes
He said ADB has agreed to an alternative plan that would allow for
the construction of the breakwater for the new Colombo South Harbour,
with US$ 300 million funding from the bank. An earlier arrangement
involved an open and transparent awarding of the contract for building
the new harbourís first terminal.
Therefore, details and a final confirmation of the new deal will not
be available until early next week.
The Colombo South Harbour will mainly focus on handling transshipment
cargo in the subcontinent. At present, the Port of Colombo alone handles
15 per cent of transshipment cargo in the subcontinent.
The Colombo South Harbour will be located west of the present
south-west breakwater in an area of about 600 hectares.
The harbour will have four terminals of over 1,200m in length each to
accommodate three berths alongside depths of 18m and provision to deepen
to 23m to accommodate deeper draft vessels of the future.
The channel width of the harbour is to be 560m and depth of 20m, with
harbour basin depth of 18m and a 600m turning circle. The harbour will
boast the latest generation of yard planning and container handling
equipment and techniques.
The project will raise the capacity of the Colombo Port from the
existing around four million TEUs annually to about 12 million. The
first terminal is likely to become operational in 2010 and will have a
nominal capacity of 2.4 million TEUs.
The project is part of the Colombo Port Expansion Project, the
largest project undertaken by the Sri Lanka Ports Authority with a $1200
It is a Government built-and-owed harbour facility and will have a
private-public partnership in the provision of terminal services.
In addition, the SLPA will be the overall landlord, with an equity
stake in each terminal.
The Asian Development Bank has pledged a US$ 35 million loan towards
the commencement of the project. The completion is scheduled for 2010.