Indian EXIM Bank funds for KKS harbour rehabilitation | Daily News

Indian EXIM Bank funds for KKS harbour rehabilitation

Ports Authority to handle the project:

The Indian EXIM Bank will provide a loan facility for the rehabilitation of the Kankesanthurai (KKS) harbour in Jaffna.

The Cabinet on Tuesday approved Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s proposal to enter into a loan agreement with the Indian EXIM Bank for USD 45.27 million to develop the harbour.

The project is to be handled by the Sri Lanka Ports Authority. The development of the KKS harbour will further enhance trade activities in the North.

The harbour, an important port in the country had not been used for many years due to the war. From 1994 to 1996, the LTTE sank six ships in the harbour and its channel making it unusable.

In July 2011, the previous regime entered into an MoU with the Indian government for the rehabilitation of the KKS harbour. At the time, the Indian government in a press release stated that “India has made available Rs. 2.18 billion (US$19 million) as a fully grant-funded project for the wreck removal work in Kankasanthurai. India has also funded an initial hydrographic survey, completed in June-July 2010”.

The project in six phases was due to be completed in two and a half years. By 2013, India had completed the first four phases with the removal of six sunken vessels via a grant of USD 19.5 million. Work was suspended. The fifth and sixth phases remained unfinished. When the government changed in 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi once again broached the subject of the harbour and Prime Minister Wickremesinghe had given him a positive response over the programme. The harbour when functional will be the nearest port for eastern ports in India as well as for Myanmar and Bangladesh. 

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