Port Trade Unions have once again voiced their concerns over the proposed project to lease 13 acres of SLPA property to Chinese linked firm.
It has been proposed to hand over 13 acres of land bordering the CICT, SAGT and Eastern Terminals of the Colombo Port to a public-private partnership.
According to a cabinet paper submitted on July 21, it has been proposed to hand over the land to the Colombo Container Terminal (CICT), of which China has a majority stake.
This project is to be implemented on the basis of Build, Operate and Transfer, and it has been decided to appoint a discussion committee consisting of the Secretaries of the Ministries for the relevant activities.
Niroshan Gorakanage, a trade unionist said there is growing concern if an attempt is being made to privatize the ECT and JCT
The CICT Terminal at the Port of Colombo is operated by a Chinese majority company and the neighboring Port City of Colombo is a Chinese project.
The SAGT Terminal at the Port of Colombo is also operated by multinational corporations.
The western terminal has already been handed over to Adani Group in India and the eastern terminal was taken over by the Ports Authority after a workers’ strike, but the unions say authorities are not interested in making it a more efficient service.
There is growing concern as to whether the Port Authority’s Jaya Container Terminal and Samagi Container Terminal will be able to compete with other terminals.
In this situation, will the Port of Colombo, which is strategically located in the Sea of Sri Lanka, one day be lost too?