Sri Lanka, Singapore draw plan to make Trincomalee Bay of Bengal gateway

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will make Trincomalee in the island’s East Coast as the gateway to the Bay of Bengal region, Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe said as a plan to develop the port city was drawn up by a Singaporean planning firm.

"When Sri Lanka was a major hub in the Indian Ocean in ancient times, there were several ports in the West and East of the country," Prime Minister Wickramasinghe said.

"The initiatives to develop Trincomallee in the next 10 to 15 years are in this plan.

"By 2050, the Bay of Bengal region will have a population of three billion people"

Singapore’s Surbana Jurong, a state connected planning firm had developed the Trincomalee masterplan with Sri Lanka’s Megapolis and Western Development Ministry.

Wickramasinghe said an ‘Eastern Economic Corridor’ will be connected with a highway to the central city of Kandy, for which funding will come from the Asian Development Bank.

Wickramasinghe said strategies were already in place to develop the Western province and the South. The next step was Jaffna in the North.

Analysts say the Bay of Bengal area was a vibrant maritime region until the end of the British Empire.

However post-independent nations, including India had progressively been driven by socialist and nationalist philosophies, articulated by German and Eastern European philosophers like Friedrich List and Karl Marx had gradually closed the economies, leading to stagnation and poverty.

East Asia on the other hand opened and integrated. (Colombo/July12/2018)

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