COLOMBO (EconomyNext) – China Harbour Engineering Company is finalising design of the property project in the controversial Colombo Port City on reclaimed land in the Sri Lankan capital and plans to apply to the government for approval, an official said.
The company, a big Chinese construction firm, was attracted to Sri Lanka’s by its post-war economic growth that shows its economic potential, said Wang Haiguang, Manager Investment Department, China Harbour Engineering Co. and CHEC Port City Colombo.
The project, that will reclaim land next to the new Colombo South Harbour, is an opportunity to design a city from scratch, he said.
“We are in the final stages of trying to finalise the design and will then apply to the government authorities for approval,” Wang said.
“The Colombo city central business district (CBD) itself is congested,” he told an Indian Ocean hospitality forum in Colombo.
“By reclaiming land right next to the CBD it’s a great opportunity to have a clean sheet of paper to design an ultra-modern metropolis, probably the most modern in the whole of south Asia.”
The Colombo City project is an opportunity to design a “clean, green city that’s sustainable,” Wang said.
Reclamation work on the project was halted by Sri Lanka’s new government formed after the January 8 presidential poll which ousted the Rajapaksa regime.
Leaders of the new government had threatened to cancel the project when in opposition during the election campaign.
The government has said the project lacks proper environmental clearances and last week appointed a committee of officials to see how it could proceed with proper approvals.