Sri Lanka has not told India and Japan it is pulling out of Port deal
ECONOMYNEXT- Sri Lankan government is yet to officially tell India and Japan that it is withdrawing from the trilateral agreement that was signed regarding the East Container Terminal of Colombo of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority.
Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told reporters that the Foreign Ministry has not yet officially announced to India and Japan that Sri Lanka is going to pull out of the deal.
“There were agreements in 2017 and 2019 and there were certain dialogues and exchange of views from each side, so we will be communicating our final decision in due course,” he added.
Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa On February 1, assured the coalition of trade unions protesting against the handing over of the ECT that Sri Lanka will not hand over it to a foreign company.
The Prime Minister said that the Terminal will be 100 per cent owned and operated by the Sri Lanka Port Authority.
This decision also came when 10 constituent parties in the governing alliance raised their opposition for the deal.
Wimal Weerawansha, leader of the National Freedom Front said that Constituent parties of the ruling coalition have a role to play within the government without being political slaves to anyone faction and added that their only priority should be to protect the mandate given to the government by 6.9 million people.
The current government was planning to develop the ECT keeping 51-pct of the ownership with SLPA and rest of 49-pct having involved with India’s Adani group and another stakeholder.
Last month President Gotabaya Rajapaksa told trade union leaders when he met them that ECT will be developed keeping its ownership under Sri Lanka and assured it won’t be sold or leased. (Colombo February 9, 2021)
Reported by Imesh Ranasinghe