In The Press

Colombo Port City - Bidding process to be completed by May


Many investors across the globe have shown a keen interest in bidding and investing in the Colombo Port City on which land reclamation work was completed last week and is about to commence work on its next stage shortly, a senior official of the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development told Business Observer.

He said there was tremendous interest shown by individuals and multinational corporates across the world on investing in the Port City which is slated to transform the commercial landscape of the country.

Minister of Megapolis and Western Development Patali Champika Ranawaka said the government has held a series of investor fora in UK, USA, France, Germany, Sweden, Japan, China and South Korea. “Certain investors have made proposals and we hope to compete the calling of bids by the end of May,” the Minister said adding that work on the next stage which includes vesting land with the Land Reclamation Commission and developing them as a part of the Colombo district as a special and urban development area under the Urban Development Authority (UDA).

Of the 74 plots of land four would be released initially, he said.

The first will be for the Financial City while the other three will be for schools, hospitals and convention centres.

According to the Minister, of the 269 hectares of land 178 will be developed as a city and the rest would be public space. He said currently preparation of land for public parks is underway and they will be opened by 2020.

“China Habour Engineering Company is keen to invest in the Financial City buildings and the proposals to link the Port City to the road network in Colombo through a tunnel has been approved. The tunnel will extend from Chaithya Road to Kollupitiya Junction extending the Galle Face Green by 30 metres. The project will be carried out as a private public partnership arrangement,” the Minister said. The Port City, when completed, is expected to be South Asia’s premier residential, retail and business destination offering unmatched planned city living. The development will comprise five precincts including a financial district, central park living, island living, marina and the international island. The City will also offer world-class facilities and space in healthcare, education, entertainment, hotels and restaurants, retail and office with an integrated resort and marina.

However, several concerns have been raised by environmentalists and eco-activists regarding the adverse repercussions the Port City Project would have on marine life, the coastal belt, air and water in the city.

Responding to the allegations the Minister said there is no base whatsoever to the accusations made by environmentalists who are making statements based on speculations. We have taken all precautions and addressed all environmental issues prior to giving the green light to the project.

Work on the mega development project which commenced in September 2014 with an initial investment of US$ 1.4 billion is scheduled to be completed by 2040.