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Investment opportunities in Colombo Port City showcased

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A recently concluded breakfast meeting held at Hilton Colombo Residencies, organised by the European Chamber of Commerce Sri Lanka in collaboration with CHEC Port City Colombo Ltd., showcased the investment opportunities in the Colombo Port City and provided participants with a holistic overview of the project. The event was held to create awareness amongst European investors as well as the Sri Lankan business community of the current status of the project and the many investment opportunities in the Port City Colombo.

The ECCSL Board members, Hans Svendsen, Dilipan Tyagarajah, Koenraad Pringiers, John Wilson and Hatem Rajabdeen were present at the event, along with Paul Godfrey (Head – Political, Trade and Communications) and Roshan Lyman (Deputy Head – Political, Trade and Communications) from the EU Delegation in Sri Lanka. The CHEC Port City Colombo management team was also in attendance, inclusive of Liang Thow Ming (Chief Sales and Marketing Officer), Thulci Aluwihare (Head of Strategy and Business Development) and Kelvin Tan (Regional Sales Director, South East Asia and Head of Marketing Communication).

Welcoming the participants and the Port City team, John Wilson, Attorney-at-Law and Notary Public and a Director of the European Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka highlighted the importance of the Port City project in the overall scheme of planned development for the Western Megapolis Region and noted that as reclamation work is targeted for completion next year, now was an opportune time for European investors to evaluate investment opportunities.

The speaker at the event representing CHEC Port City Colombo was Liang Thow Ming, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer who explained in detail the project plan of the Colombo Port City to an engaged and interested audience consisting of many blue chip and multinational companies, eminent faces in the business world and prospective overseas investors.

Port City with a projected investment of $ 15 billion is expected to hold a population of 250,000 employees, expats and local residents in its total built-up area of 5.65M m2 (1.5 million square meters). This public private partnership is conducted in collaboration with China Communications Construction Company, the Ministry of Megapolis and Western Development and the Urban Development Authority.

“Colombo is perfectly situated to be the centre of a new regional hub, to create an epicentre between both the East and the West,” pointed out Liang Thow Ming.”Colombo is also ranked as the most livable city in South Asia, with an expected tourist arrivals figure of 4.5 million by 2020. Which is an average increase of 25% year-over-year from 2009 to 2016.42% of Sri Lanka’s GDP is contributed by the Western Province where Colombo is situated”, he continued.

Port City as a futuristic nucleus in Asia has made sustainability its key focus. The city will take on an eco-cycle approach and concentrate on reducing its footprint by ensuring lower demand for electricity and fossil fuels; lower demand for fresh water, energy for cooling and interior lighting - while providing higher quality of water, energy, and material and plant nutrient recycling. The eco-cycle strategy comprises waste loop; which is waste source separation, renewable energy loop; which includes solar energy wind power, water loop; which encompasses drinking water, waste water treatment and rainwater harvesting.

The city will give priority to its pedestrians and cyclists with distinct bicycle lanes and pedestrian walkways while, public transport, cabs and owned vehicles will be given ancillary importance. The existing transport pyramid which is present in traditional cities where the private motor vehicle is the most prominent form of transport will therefore be radically transformed to a pedestrian centric model.

The masterplan/strategic development overview includes an integrated Resort and Theme Park, International Medical Centre, preeminent International School, Convention and Exhibition Centre, International Financial Centre, a retail area with the world’s biggest brands, world-class hospitality and a Marina area.

“We believe that through the development of The Port City Colombo, the impact to the greater part of Colombo will be positive, where the expected ‘flight to quality’ will drive other high rise buildings and office complexes to upgrade their infrastructure and facilities to match ours. This brand new city will pose brand new opportunities to Sri Lankans and those in neighbouring countries who are seeking better medical care, educational facilities and superior lifestyles. In addition to the massive investments forecasted, Colombo Port City will be the catalyst to create an unprecedented flow of foreign exchange earnings to the country,” commented Liang Thow Ming.

CHEC Port City Colombo Ltd. through China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) is part of China Communications Construction Company Ltd. (CCCC). Incorporated in 2006, CCCC is listed on the Hong Kong and Shanghai Stock Exchanges. CHEC Port City Colombo Ltd. is the master developer of Port City Colombo. Efforts are underway to attract operators and developers to develop the city in accordance with the development control regulations which have been formulated.

The project timeline for the city from its date of inauguration in 2016 is as follows; by2018 the commencement of development work will take place, and by 2020 the initial infrastructure will be completed. Completion of the International Financial Centre is scheduled for 2024 and by 2026 the completion of the key areas such as Medical Centre, International School, Hospitality and Convention and Exhibition Centre will have taken place. Target completion of the entirety of Port City will be 2041.

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