28 June, 2022


Colombo Port City Becomes Colombo International Financial City

The much hyped Colombo Port City has been renamed as the Colombo International Financial City. A tripartite agreement was signed today by the Megapolis and Western Development Ministry, together with the Urban Development Authority (UDA) and the CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt.) Ltd.

Champika Ranawaka - Minister Megapolis and Western Development

Champika Ranawaka – Minister Megapolis and Western Development

The agreement allows CHEC to re-commence construction work of the project which was originally mooted by former President Mahinda Rajapaksa and later suspend by under the President Maithripala Maithripala Sirisena – Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe led government citing environment concerns and procedural irregularities. During the run up to the Presidential Election in 2015, Wickremesinghe vowed to scrap the project if they came to power.

The new agreement which replaced the old agreement signed during Rajapaksa’s term, also allocated a further two hectares for the project in place of the US $ 125 million compensation claim made by CHEC as loss due to the government’s decision to suspend the project last year.

The Yahapalanaya government has coined a new name for the project although the concept remains the same. The project will be utilized to develop Colombo in to a financial hub and attract foreign investments from South Asia, Middle East and Europe.

Meanwhile, Wickremesinghe will leave for China tomorrow on an official tour. This is his second visit since April this year.

The US $1.4 billion China-funded project was originally to be built on 233 hectares (576 acres) of reclaimed land — an area slightly larger than Monaco — and was to attract local and international investments for shopping malls, hotels, apartments, an exhibition center, educational institutions, healthcare facilities, theme parks, and restaurants, among others. When the project was suspended in March 2015, construction work was already underway, after it was inaugurated in September 2014 in the presence of Chinese President Xi Jinping and Rajapaksa.

The original estimate was that the project would generate 83,000 local jobs and attract international investments to the tune of US $ 13 billion when the project is fully completed.

Just weeks after Wickremesinghe gave the green light for the project, the People’s Movement Against the Port City criticized Wickremesinghe for his change in policy against the controversial port city project. “It is very unfortunate that Mr. Wickremesinghe, now as the Prime Minister of the Government of ‘Good Governance’, is not only acting against his own words but also against the promise that he made to millions of people who voted him to power trusting his pledge,” the movement said in a statement.

Although the Yahapalanaya Government under Sirisena and Wickremesinghe adopted an indifferent attitude towards China after coming to power, their failure to bring in considerable foreign investments to the country eventually resulted in them limping back to China and following in Rajapaksa’s footsteps.

During several high level meets, China had also warned the Sri Lankan government against antagonizing them and against blocking Chinese funded projects in the country.

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Latest comments

  • 5

    Ranil eating humble pie. The Chinese will make sure they see his back very soon.

    • 4

      ‘Colombo Port City Becomes Colombo International Financial City’. This is like Champika moving from bullock card lifestyle to four wheeler luxuries.

      If Champika can be transform why can’t Colombo Port City?

      Will Champika’s hate thoughts change to one of broader embracing posh one soon?

      Dankottuwa Manike doubts!!!!!!!!

      • 0

        ¬Dankottuwa Manike doubts!!!!!!!!¬

        How would the waste systems be channeled but into existing Colombo Sewer which was refurbished by Canadian firm during 1983 riots.
        This was not taken to account so They must have a PIG Farm- BodiSira Champa – Orwell must be smiling in his grave.

    • 4

      Chinese have brought Yahapalana monkeys into line. Without making too much noise or losing composure. Gentle giant in action.

      China is an old country. 5000+ years.

      Corrupt, incompetent monkeys in SL, be they Toiyas or Baiyas will do well to remember that fact.

      Beggars can’t be choosers!


      • 0

        Chinas Island Factory: 5 acres/2hectres at $$125 million.
        Financial Hub No Go Area
        The first major land reclamations were done in the 1970s, when the Port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands was extended with sand suppletion from the sea with the first Maasvlakte reclamation. This extension allowed the port to continue to develop and to accommodate more ships and it helped Europoort to add container terminals and become the largest in Europe at the time, providing jobs and stimulating the economy without infringing upon an already congested city.
        In the Maldives, new land has been reclaimed from the sea to build a new island called Hulhumale next to Male. This has relieved some of the overcrowding on Male itself.
        Does the international dredging industry have sufficient capacity to cope with the present demand for the realisation of maritime infrastructure projects? This is a realistic question that has no simple answer. To look at the international dredging contractors’ level of activity is to realise that their portfolios are quite full and that long-term planning is necessary. On the other hand, these companies continue to invest in in-house R&D, as well as extensive co-operation with universities and knowledge institutes to maintain the economic advantage of offering land reclamation at a reasonable price. The purchase of innovative dredging plant, larger vessels and hi-tech systems also allows them to keep their cubic-metre price sharp. But the demand for new land is high and involving a dredging contractor early on in land development plans (“early contractor involvement”) is certainly the most economical way of ensuring the best cost price and finding the most feasible solution to match the needs assessment of the client.

    • 0

      Don’t bring a Chinese to your house, they will still something. .including your money. .

  • 4

    Excellent and smart move Hon.minister.

    “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade”
    Salute your decision ,although am still sad and worry of the environmental impact.

    The past regimes blunders after blunders have left none of with any alternatives, if this government survives and turns the situation around , especially while the whole world is collapsing economically, thanks to the insanity religious extremists in the name of God.of course which God has nothing to do with in fact .

    The government and its members could be the PAP of South asia and could easily take full charge of the house .

    • 0

      rather chameleon is smarter than the pen for hens.
      2017- say cock a doodle do lost my shooo shoo;)

  • 7

    I am very sceptical about this project.
    83,000 new jobs?
    Attract foreign investment.?

    Hambantota is an empty and ghost city.
    No planes landing
    No ships harbouring
    No cricket matched in the international stadium
    No conference is the international conference centre
    No tourist in the empty 5 star hotels

    Colombo Port City will be the same

    Look at Colombo Fort….all the famous land mark buildings are neglected Cargills, Millers, Tabrobane, Times building etc etc
    The development of Marine Drive from Colpetty to Dehiwela is not controlled and cheap restaurants and outfits springing up

    There is going to be over capacity of hotels.
    Hotels are priced at exorbitant rates
    cost of living in Colombo is high

    Roads are already over crowded.
    We are going to have another ghost city

    • 3

      Rajash – You said it right. It was a colossal waste of borrowed money
      at high interest rate to develop Hambantota for prestige sake. No
      development is taking place in this are and the city remains a ghost city, as you mentioned.The “Yahapalanayas’ are planning to dump more billions in this area, purely for the purpose of wresting control of the area from MR family to promote UNP and Premadasa, while some of
      the provinces, which need developments, have reached poverty lines as
      people have no employment and no new projects are added. None of the above mentioned projects are going to yield any good results as those projects already completed at Hambantota do not fit into that area like airlines have not lined up to get landing rights at Mattala airport nor people there, line up to watch cricket matches.

      Monies burrowed at high interest rates should be wisely used and should not spend of unproductive projects. Port city will no doubt
      beautify the city but will it yield good results, financially

    • 1

      Lanka watch
      Indeed. Colombo is reaching saturation point and going to burst in its seams.
      Why build another city there? when, as you rightly say, the provinces are neglected.
      The govt should plan to build one major industry in each of the province.
      look at at India, all the major cities have some sort of industrial base. New cities like Noida, Pune are thriving.
      Even small cities like Hyderabad has a strong economy.

      Over developing colombo will lead to migration and overcrowding leading housing shortage, and spiralling cost of living

      • 1

        Shanghai water table has risen and the buildings are sinking so Xi is moving to other cities.
        Premadasa sewer line was planned for 50 years ahead- 20 left without financial hub capacity.
        Dubai city has no sewer line so trucks take the poop and the queue of trucks is 2 kilometer long- stench is unbearable.

        Enjoy chop suey.

      • 1

        Rajash- You are right again. all new projects should be shifted
        to provinces equally. India did it systematically and all 29
        states are independent and do not depend on central Govt. for
        funds to run their states as each state has major industries,
        which produces enough income. Once the confiscated farm lands
        are released to the people of N/E, this area could become an
        ideal location to have Fisheries and farming industry and like
        wise other provinces too should be developed with industries
        there and ease congestion at Colombo. Bombay is an example
        where one cannot find an inch of land to build and overcrowded
        to an extent that we see a sea of heads in the capital and
        accommodation is a major problem and a health hazard. SL should take note and decentralize commercial activities to all nine provinces. What is required is an airport, sea port, where ever possible and good road network in the provinces.There are advantages in decentralizing as for e.g.Palaly airport and KKS seaport should be made into regional ports to transport goods and passengers to and from India, Middle and Far east at reduced costs which will benefit the people of N/E and N/C provinces and
        employment opportunities made available.

  • 5

    Champaka Ranawake was wasting his time in dabbling in communal politics in the past instead of using his talents in the right direction. he has now realised that and being a well qualified and capable personality has got onto the job and is forging ahead by putting his capability to the fore and is the best pick for the task under review.His thoughts are now directed towards the development of the country so we wish him the best

  • 4

    Few aspects not in favour of the development of Colombo international financial city: Is too much Colombo centred developments desirable? A good many of the wage earners just cannot afford to live in the high rise. Can the sprawl be taken care of? The project may end up as a casino venue with all the vices which go with it. China is turning out to be an imperial power – through economic stronghold and militarily if the need arises. Minister Champika Ranawaka is a carpet bagger. He has his eyes set on becoming President. Can he be trusted to put his ambitions aside?.

    • 0

      100% – he was the cause of canada spearheading the first defeat at unhrc. now thats one way of slinging mud on the face of a electric fascist.

  • 3

    Ranil didn’t think twice before shooting his mouth off and now eating humble pie. So much for master politician

    • 2

      Where are those civil society and NGO ******** who were crying horse about environmental disaster?


      • 4

        Gamme godde Some- colombo malasanya, minister short circuit high voltage.

        Subic bay – Casino and Kuddu from Pakistan and sex-slaves- no go area.

        The proof of the pudding is its edibility- it requires dredging anually so the chinese discharge the sewer to the main sewers of colombo- have fun in the floods Goooo kollo.

  • 2

    You mean US has given the green light for this? After all, Ranil’s US-stance is absolute.I’d be very, very wary.

    With Clinton, US will turn a blind eye, or encourage it, and then take their chance to bomb the whole thing, preceding the eventual invasion.

    Unless, they have made some kind of deal with Trump. On the other hand, Trump might just bomb the whole thing if a deal can’t be met(i.e. as long as China upholds the US dollar by amalgamating China Yuan with US $$- aka paying taxes to US). Will we ever know?

  • 2

    Thanks CT..

    Small adjustment though,,It s USD 134 Million in total, as compensation for unnecessary delays and damages caused to the company.

    In addition to the second apology which is coming soon from Batalnda Ranil to the great Chinese People. .

    Perpetual Bond Brokers,

    Mahendran’s Family Trust & Pension Fund ,

    Galleon’s TRO Funds Management ,

    And Malik Samre’s Srikotha Trustees Ltd. must be the movers and shakers in this Colombo International Financial City.

    Unless Ambani in Bombay moves his Empire to Port City under Batalanda’s GIE ETCA, just to get away from the Slum Dwellers who surrounds his Luxury Tower.

    So , he can do a power walk on Galle Face Green..


  • 7

    Government is only talking about developing 233 hectares of reclaimed land. What is happening to other 170 hectares of reclaimed land given to China on a 99 year lease and 20 hectres of reclaimed land which has been sold to China outright which can never be got back unless China gifts it back to Srilanka. Where is the cry of soverignty when at the door step of the capital, you cannot raise Srilanka flag. Mahinda has screwed up this and both MS & RW can do nothing about it.

    • 3

      Absolutely right

  • 3

    These fking idiots wasted 18 months just to change the name. Old wine in a new bottle. Government admitted that the project was stopped due to pressure from India. Is it possible to make India happy by changing the name. Gave two hectares and claim that they are not paying compensation. Whom are they trying to deceive.

    In 1977, JRJ went after Uncle Sam thinking that they will come to rescue him but it did not materialize. Indira took the revenge for that and the country went through hell. In 2014, the nephew followed uncle’s footsteps and ended up getting nothing from the west except flattering words. Bloody fool humiliated China and now going to China with a begging bowl. I hope China will not do nasty things like Hindians because Chinese are more civilized than Hindians.

    • 3

      “”I hope China will not do nasty things like Hindians because Chinese are more civilized than Hindians. “”

      Purawesiya do you sleep on pakis petti or buru andda?
      Which shanty setting do you live at lankewe?? Your free education and rice from the moon is the bane of your stupidity.

      China will never never get involved in a fight for another nation or culture. Chine needs colonies to control outright. China still gets AID from us in the Europe. Chinese were dying of hunger until EU,US opened WTO doors.
      China has run into African life and robbed the people it now owns 30% of all African bank. (you have not travelled to ask citizen of South Africa how they feel. We have Chinese here in the west. they smile until you buy goods and once you finish they don’t say even hello- take care.Their culture is give me give me like you begging from west and begging from 1948- beggars trying to use politics to threaten??

      15-01-2015 India swapped $1.5 billion of useless SLR to keep it from being devalued and price of essential items going up when China refused. (Russia tried to park missiles at Cuba aimed at the Giant USA and were driven away so therefore the sanctions) India has refused to take any AID from West and did not take Tsunami.
      Your problem is you and everyone were transported to the island to work on the plantations like the west indians so you are afraid of your shadow beggar boys and girls. you are the new settler and after 21 Jan 2017 if you don’t reform you are doomed because Trump, is admired by Xi, Putin. Trumps main funders is hindu indian industrialist `Shalli`Kumar Chicago no tatte motte. your karma is bad go do a thoil like kapaluwa Mara family- fact you poster are ill educated hingano. it’s good to know you can get bombed too by IC and India if ranil does not behave.
      Every day is not X’mas good friday for lanka after 9/11 bonanza- kapan beepan jolly karapan.

  • 3

    Name change is more in the way of portraying the reality of the ownership; that is how much Lankawe lacks on the ownership of it.

    If one say Colombo – Chinese Embassy or Colombo – British Embassy, The Colombo there is only to indicate the geographical location of the Embassy. But its full sovereign land of the country holding the Embassy. No Lankawe activity or judgement enters the compound. If you say Colombo Port City, the meaning is reversed. The Colombo Port and in turn its owner the Port Authority becomes the owner of the land. China manages the Colombo Port to Lankawe. It has no ownership on that property. So China did not like same sense apply to its Island City. So it wanted to have the name changed to “International Financial City”. It is stressing the lack Lankawe ownership on the Island City. The word “International” many time added by private companies to make to look like fancier. But government Corporations and operations don’t do lot of it. If they call Katunayake International Airport, It naturally ended up to lot of International overseeing. Many International Game clubs face the same situation. Recently Russia was about to banned from Olympics for not following the Olympic’s International Committee’s regulation. India took it and Lankawe may soon take it. There are International area where Lankawe lose full authority to cook up or manipulate the way it want as it is doing the inland court. The law on the Island city will be dictated by China so it wants to have that sense reflected. It just managing the Colombo Port. But it did not like Lankawe raise its flag there in February 2015. But it will be very strict in handling those type of things in the Island City. Sinhale flag, Namo namo Sinhala Song and Kadyan Kooththu will be limited only where ever it appears appropriate in the Island City. These are general sense indicated by the name change.

    There is nothing interesting in when it is still keeping the developer company’s name as CHEC Port City Colombo (Pvt.) Ltd. First is that company was created to develop. Second is, touching on that original deed may water out the hold China or the CCCC has on the Port City. So for the time being China did not go for that name change. But if China ever takes over the white elephants projects in Hambantota, Old King’s name will be removed out of them.

    I am not sure if the name change has to do anything with a retaliation mood of China for Ranil’s refusal to supply water and electricity to the Island City. One can appropriately suspect that as Ranil ended by adding more land to Island City, developement of which he delayed saying a massive man made intervention like that is going to be environmental disaster for Lankawe. In the retaliation for that China had more land added to the already massive enough to damage the Lankawe’s environment.

  • 0

    We can call it “White Elephant City”!

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