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Sri Lanka’s Hambantota port loses Rs18.8bn a year

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port, built by a Chinese firm with a loan from China during the ousted Mahinda Rajapaksa regime, has lost Rs18.8 billion ($147 million) a year, a Finance Ministry document said.

The government has so far spent Rs175 billion on the project ($1.19 billion), and taxpayers have to service loans taken from China to build it. It was a design-build-transfer project.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe has said Sri Lanka plans to sell 80 percent of the port to China for $1billion.

Cumulative losses are Rs37.2 billion ($253 million), the document said.

Maththala Airport, named after Mahinda Rajapaksa, loses Rs5.9 billion a year, the document said.

The government has spent Rs27.5 billion ($187 million), with loans taken from China.  Cumulative losses are Rs13.6 billion. (Colombo/Nov11/2016)

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