News

Cancelling MoC on ECT: India, Japan yet to be informed

  • Despite 2 weeks since cabinet decision

  • Renegotiations centred on WCT yet to begin

  • New negotiation comm. to start work soon

 

Despite a lapse of two weeks since the Cabinet of Ministers decided to open the Colombo Port’s West Container Terminal (WCT) for international development instead of the East Container Terminal (ECT), as promised previously to India and Japan, the Government is yet to officially communicate the decision to India and Japan, The Sunday Morning learnt.

Furthermore, the Government is yet to begin communications with the two countries for the renegotiation of the tripartite agreement signed between Sri Lanka, India, and Japan on the ECT.

The Government has not even communicated the cabinet decision taken with regard to the Memorandum of Co-operation (MoC) signed between the three countries to their foreign missions in Sri Lanka. The missions have since expressed their displeasure over the Sri Lankan Government’s decision and have had discussions with the Government pertaining to the matter.

Highly informed diplomatic sources told The Sunday Morning that the Government has not begun any sort of communications with regard to the said tripartite agreement.

Nevertheless, speaking to The Sunday Morning, Secretary to the Ministry of Ports and Shipping U.D.C. Jayalal said that negotiations would commence immediately with the two governments of India and Japan through a new negotiation committee.

Two weeks ago, the Cabinet approved a proposal made to develop the WCT as a Public-private partnership (PPP) with India and Japan by cancelling the decision made by the previous United National Front (UNF)-led Government to call for investments for the development of the ECT.