Sri Lanka inks MoC with India and Japan to develop container terminal at Colombo Port
The Government of Sri Lanka Tuesday, 28 May 2019 signed a Memorandum of Cooperation (MoC) with the governments of Japan and India on the development of the East Container Terminal (ECT) of the Colombo South Port.
High Commissioner of India to Colombo Taranjit Singh Sandhu, Ambassador of Japan to Sri Lanka Akira Sugiyama and Sri Lankan Minister of Ports & Shipping and Southern Development Sagala Ratnayake signed the MoC in Colombo.
“As a hub of the Indian Ocean, the development of Sri Lanka and openness of its ports are of great importance. Colombo Port is the leading Port in the region. This joint project reflects the longstanding good will and cooperation among the three countries,” the Sri Lanka Port Authority (SLPA) said in a statement.
Japan has provided cooperation for the development of the Jaya Container Terminal since the 1980’s. Around 70% of Colombo Port’s transshipment business is India-related. Sri Lanka, Japan and India will work together for further development of the Colombo Port and contribute to further regional prosperity and stability of global trading networks.
SLPA retains 100% ownership of East Container Terminal (ECT). The Terminal Operations Company (TOC) conducting all East Container Terminal operations is jointly owned; Sri Lanka retains a 51% stake, and the joint venture partners hold a 49% stake.
The envisaged Japanese loan carries one of the best loan terms Sri Lanka has obtained.
The 51% stake is also one of the best in SLPA joint ownership endeavors. SLPA’s majority ownership in the new TOC represents a significant step in prioritizing National Interests.
The three governments will work out details based on the MOC at joint working group meetings, and advance their cooperation towards early commencement of work and operation of the ECT, the SLPA said.