Magampura Port to exploit Lanka's locational advantage
Continued from last week
The ships which arrive from Middle East and Africa and sail from Asia
and Oceania need to have an interim point to get their facilities and
Hambantota is the most suitable place for the purpose.
The Magampura Port can perform a prominent role as a fuel and crew
changing centre as well as for receiving water, drugs, foods and fruits.
It is an international requirement and a mechanism of generating
foreign exchange to the country as well.
Hambantota can be utilized in facility as a cargo exchange centre for
the trade between west and east of Indian sub continent.
The reputation of Hongkong, Singapore, Dubai Ports will be attracted
by Hambantota Port when Sri Lanka would become a hub centre in the
international trade network gathered around India and China.
It has been intended to grant 2000 hectares Government land to
industrialists all over the world with tax holidays and land owned by
the Government with rent favours.
Foreign investors are able to utilize the Hambantota Port in a
warless peaceful environment as they wish.
The major Local factor for construction Hambantota Port is the
Panchabala Kendra concept of Mahinda Chinthana. Hambantota becomes the
ideal area to construct a Port and to plan a modern city under this
People of several districts will benefit after the construction of
this Port in a more difficult and poverty stricken area. Some benefits
are as follows:
5000 to 6000 direct employment opportunity for the youths
25000 to 50000 indirect employment opportunities for permanent
residents in the area.
Construction work on the Magampura port continues at a rapid
Creation of an international market for vegetables and fruits for the
farmers in the area.
Opportunities for skilled workers to join as International Seafarers
Creating and receiving new business opportunities
Utilizing as an industrial harbour for the development requirements.
The possibility of regional development and the focus on economic
development in the country by generating foreign exchange are among the
Having an appropriate deep sea, free of tidal waves and the dry
climatic conditions are also favourable attributes.
The land where the Magampura Port is constructed can be identified as
the most suitable land for a new Port. This can be identified as a
combined project of the on-going combined development projects in
poverty stricken zones such as Matara, Hambantota, Moneragala. Mega
factories, highways, international grounds, international Airport,
International Conference Halls, Rail roads and water supply schemes have
already been implemented under this project.
The background for the H'tota Port
At a time of dreaming of Magampura Harbour, signing of the agreement
with Chinese President Hu Jintao, and President Mahinda Rajapakse,
during his visit to China commemorating the Golden Jubilee of bilateral
relationship between China and Sri Lanka made the path to become the
dream a reality.
As a result, 85 percent out of the US $360 million investment to
construct the Magampura Port was granted as a special patronage of the
The relevant project reports were reviewed by the Cabinet appointed
special discussion Committee and submitted to the Cabinet for approval
to construct the Magampura Harbour was given to China. It was approved
by the Cabinet.
The agreement for the construction of the "Magampura" Harbour was
signed between the Sri Lanka Ports Authority and the China Harbour
Engineering Company Ltd., and Syno Hydro Co-operation Ltd Group Company
Board on March 12, 2007.
Combined development plan
With the idea of the Magampura Port coming into effect we can see
that it has been developed alongside the Hambantota Combined Development
The thoughts of the people about Hambantota were arid and harsh. Now
their minds are being transformed as a developing land zone. The pioneer
of this change is the Port. Attention was paid regarding the necessary
infrastructure when the basic plans were prepared for the construction
of Magampura Port. This was developed as the Combined Development Plan
and under the guidance of His Excellency the President and the following
major projects are being implemented.
* International Port of Magampura
* Hambantota International Cricket Ground
* Hambantota International Conference Hall
* Ranmihithenna Tele Cinema village
* Dry Zone Botanical Gardens
* Railway services to Kataragama
* Mattala International Airport
* Highway system
* Administrative Complex
The Hambantota New Town Plan is also combined to the above.
Additionally development of projects and schools, houses, towns, water,
electricity are being implemented and arrangements are under way for a
Free Trade Zone in Hambantota too.
All government institutions and offices including Sri Lanka Ports
Authority are dedicating their services for this purpose.
Environmental balance of Magampura Port as an artificial harbour
As the Magampura Port was developed as an environmentally friendly
Port from the initial stages, there have not been any environmental
issues which many development projects have to undergo.
The Garden Port concept which many countries follow is utilized to
join the complex mechanism process and the environment, and it creates a
good mental status for an employee.
Comparing the environmental condition of Hambantota, there are
several factors which led to the environment friendly nature of the
Magampura Port such as:
* Previous experience gained from large scale projects
* Geographical diversity of Hambantota
* The weather and climatic conditions in Hambantota
A land around the port which is 15 kilometres in extent is scheduled
to be maintained with appropriate plants as a green belt.
It is noted that the designs of Magampura Port have been prepared in
accordance with Sri Lanka Environmental Act. Recycling of water and
garbage used in the Port was in the basic plan of the Magampura. Wind
and hot sunrays are the common climatic feature of Hambantota. The plan
is to utilize them as a source of energy in the future activities of the
Port basin for the second stage would be constructed with a depth of
17 metres Ship turning circle of 600 metres and the existing access road
will be deepened up to 18 metres, a Quay wall of 2,140 metres with six
berths will be constructed.
The second stage of Magampura Port
Agreements have been signed for the second stage of the Magampura
Port. Accordingly, ship turning basin has to be extended upto the depth
of 17 metres and 600 metres the circle access channel road is deepened
upto 18 metres and the terminal dam consisting of six berths would be
Parallel to this it is expected to create an island near the coast
with an extent of 50 acres using the soil removed after the excavation
of the Port.
The Karagam levaya and surroundings of 2000 hectares in extent where
450 families resided were acquired for the new Port Project of Magampura.
Compensation and land were granted for land owners and all the
infrastructure too for those lands were provided.
A new road was constructed instead of the old road and all the
obstacles for a suitable location for a port have been removed by now.
The public of the area have been made aware of the all sectors of the
project. The series of seminars conducted in schools in the area were
helpful to inculcate positive expectations over the developments in the
benefits of people in Hambantota area.
The filling of sea water for the Magampura Port of Hambantota which
commenced from August 15 has been almost completed.
Attention of the local and foreign investors has been drawn to the
Magampura Port as an attractive investment centre just after the
Magampura port is full of water. Accordingly the project committee
appointed for the consideration of the request of the investors who are
interested for the investments in Magampura port premises issued 63
applications locally and internationally and 27 investors have submitted
their proposals for the investments.
Feasibility studies are being done by the project committee for 27
applicants who submitted applications. Six cement factories, two
factories of warehouse packing, a sugar factory, a fertilizer factory
and a can packing factory and some other identified fields who have
agreed to start factories. These proposed factories will commence in the
2000 hectares which has been reserved for the Hambantota Port project by
now. With all these development activities it is to be expected that
Hambantota will become the second capital in Sri Lanka.