Sri Lanka’s biggest tourism project starts in 2018 - PM | Daily News

Sri Lanka’s biggest tourism project starts in 2018 - PM

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Ministers Sagala Ratnayake and Gayantha Karunathilaka, at the site.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe with Ministers Sagala Ratnayake and Gayantha Karunathilaka, at the site.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said the construction work of the Dedduwa tourism zone – Sri Lanka’s biggest tourism construction project so far – will begin in March next year.

The Premier stated that the Dedduwa project will focus heavily on conservation of the natural eco-system, adding that new laws will be formulated to protect the environment in the area, during construction.

The Prime Minister, yesterday, visited the site along with Ministers Sagala Ratnayaka and Gayantha Karunathilake and held discussions with the politicians and state officials in the area. During the visit, the Divisional Secretary of Benthara handed over the final report on the land acquisition for the project, to the Prime Minister.

While accepting the report, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe commented the state officials for carrying out a speedy land acquisition programme.

“We have a plan to convert this 1800-acre area into the best tourism destination in South Asia,” the Prime Minister said, before concluding the visit. “Lunuganga, an area that will be a key part of the Dedduwa project, is well-known because of the legendary architect Geoffery Bawa. The project will be very much in line with Bawa’s concepts and will further enhance the natural beauty of the area,” he added.

“The government will carry out this significant tourism development project in collaboration with the private sector,” he said.

“The true value of this project will depend on the way it contributes to the natural eco-system in the area,” the Prime Minister said, adding that he had instructed the Law and Order and Southern Development Ministry to strengthen the legal framework to protect the environment in the area.

The Galle district, the Prime Minister said, is located between two international airports – Katunaike and Mattala. “Although many concentrate on the coastal area of Galle in terms of tourism, its interior areas are blessed with natural beauty and have immense potential. That is why we have already made plans to start tourism projects in Akurala and Koggala. With all these projects, Galle, I am certain, will become a major tourism hub in the region”

“We have also developed a programme to promote tourism in and around the Sinharaja forest. Several areas including Deniyaya, Rakwana, Hinidums and Agalawatte will develop as a result of that programme.”

“We will also set up a tourism school in the Southern province.”

“This comprehensive programme will even reach the Badulla district. Tourism development and employment creation will be expanded to Southern and Uva provinces,” the Prime Minister stated.


 

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