Eight Sri Lankan Diplomats visit Hambantota International Port
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Eight Sri Lankan Diplomats visit Hambantota International Port

With representatives from several foreign embassies represented in Sri Lanka visiting the Hambantota International Port (HIP) to investigate business opportunities, the Sri Lanka Foreign Ministry organised a port visit for its ambassador designates.  In line with that, Sri Lankan ambassadors designated to 8 countries were taken on a guided tour of HIP and followed a structured familiarisation course on the port’s current activities and future plans.

“With the beginning of container operations last month, HIP is now a fully fledged port, operating in 5 silos.  We have become an important port of call for all aspects of port activities, offering significant competitive advantage in the region.  While transshipment and bunkering take the lead in terms of quayside activities, the port is actively promoting its industrial zone for investors who would see opportunity setting up in South Asia.  Given HIP’s regional significance, it is vital for Sri Lankan embassies overseas to understand the workings of the port, in order to promote it as the next best opportunity the country has to offer in ports, shipping and light industries.  Apart from that HIP has also become a preferred port of call for cruise ships which means Sri Lankan embassies abroad would be able to prioritise it when promoting tourism,” says Tissa Wickremasinghe, COO of HIPG

The visiting diplomats were, O. L. Ameerjawad, Ambassador – Designate to Saudi Arabia; M.J. P. Jayesinghe, Ambassador – Designate to China; T. P. Dharmasena, Ambassador – Designate to Poland; K. T. Fonseka, Ambassador – Designate to Sweden; E. A. S. W. Edirisinghe, Ambassador – Designate to Thailand; W. A. U. P. Perera, Ambassador – Designate to Vietnam; P. A. P. Ponnamperuma, Ambassador – Designate to Myanmar; and P. R. S. Goonawardene, High Commissioner – Designate to the Maldives.

The port team led by the COO covered a lot of ground during the short visit, including port infrastructure expansion plans and development phases of the master plan. The familiarisation session ended with a comprehensive question and answer session that helped participants to further understand and clarify information covered.  This is the second such tour organised by the Foreign Ministry of Sri Lanka.

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