At Singapore summit Ranil says Sri Lanka will exploit strategic location

Sri Lanka’s long-term objective envisages exploiting its strategic location in the Indian Ocean to ensure its economic development in a region which will be pivotal for global economic growth, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said today.

Speaking at the 6th World Cities Summit, CleanEnviro Summit and International Water Week in Singapore, the Prime Minister said that the key thrust of the Sri Lanka initiative will be the Western Megapolis and the two connecting corridor which will cover 9 million people.

He said the mega infrastructure includes the development of the ports of Colombo and Hambantota in the South.

The Prime Minister said that the new landfill adjacent to the Colombo Port is planned as an offshore Financial Centre. He said four Special Economic Zones will provide the infrastructure for industry.

“We envision the Western Province of Sri Lanka, which includes Colombo and the capital Sri Jayewardenepura as a Megapolis of interconnected metropolitan areas.  This would include a light railway system with elevated railways, elevated highways, a multi-modal transport hub, the development of old waterways, and 3 LNG plants.  It will encompass a Logistics City, a Forest City, and an Aero City.   We will aim for maximum livability by implementing sewerage and solid waste projects, an Eco Zone, and Riverine Buffer Zone Development.  Plans for the megapolis were prepared by Surbana Jurong and the Ministry of Megapolis are in the initial stages of implementation,” he said.

He said Sri Lanka will also develop two Urban Corridors; one along the 134 km-long Central Expressway leading to Kandy, and the other along the 241 km-long Southern Highway via Galle, leading to the newly built Hambantota port and Mattala airport.

The Southern corridor will include 3 large eco friendly Tourist Resorts of over 500 acres each in addition to a fully restored Galle Heritage Fort.  Surbana Jurong is also planning the development of Hambantota.

He also said that Sri Lanka needs to politically and financially revitalize and empower local governments.  The biggest issue in the management of mega-cities is that they involve many levels of Government and Local Authorities.

“Political power in many of our countries were distributed between the Central Government, the Provinces and the Local Authorities in the last century when concepts such as mega-cities and global connectivity had not even been thought of. Given that we will now have to exercise these powers for completely different objectives in a completely different environment, it is inevitable then that we must reconsider the structure of our local governments,” he said. (Colombo Gazette)

1 COMMENT

  1. Your Excellency, you have 40 years of political experience. Let’s examine what you have exploited so far for your country’s future generation.

    You need Sri Lankan votes to become the country’s Prime Minister, but need Indian God’s blessings to do your job. What are you trying to teach to your future generation as a leader? You only need Sri Lanka for votes, for anything else you go overseas. Not only you go overseas, but encourage others to do the same. You have asked the health minister to seek medical treatment in Singapore. You have also created a virtual ministerial position for former foreign minister who has resigned due to his corruption. You have continued to undermining your fellow citizens and expatriates with the help of foreign powers. Sadly, you need 40 years of political experience to do all this.

    I didn’t get a cent from China. I write for the betterment of everyone in Sri Lanka, Asia and also for the world. Sri Lankan foreign policy has to be the same for all political leaders. But in Sri Lanka foreign power decides the winner of general elections. It’s a dangerous practice, this shows Sri Lanka’s lack of knowledge. This country fought the Asia’s longest brutal civil war which lasted for three decades, due to lack of knowledge. Still this country avoids, isolates or eliminates political intellectuals. How this country has been treating people like me is disgraceful. Therefore, I urge you to change your ideology, and allow political intellectuals to help this country to move forward.

    Singapore doesn’t have a non-alliance policy; and unites its people, so the foreign power can’t divide and conquer Singapore. India has no power over Singapore even though it has Tamil minority; because of Singapore leaders’ brilliant policies. Singapore spys on Asian countries on-behalf of the West to please the West in order to continue to develop Singapore. The Western submarines, aircraft carriers and destroyers can dock in Singapore at anytime. Those days the West had money so Singapore followed the West, and did everything according to the West to develop Singapore. I urge to the same, follow the powerful country which has money to develop Sri Lanka. Useless non-alliance policy will not take Sri Lanka to the next level. I urge you to create a ‘national policy’ to move forward. Whoever doesn’t follow the national policy must be punished indirectly, so the foreign powers won’t hold you accountable for human rights violations. If you are incapable to become tough leader, you must hold elections immediately and let the people to choose their leader.

    When Singapore got independence it had six media; now it has less than ten, including online news agencies. Singapore media helps its government to communicate with its people. It helps to inform and educate the people about the government policies. The South Asian media believes that writing against their government is their primary role. It believes that having freedom to write against its government is one way of showing off the country’s democracy. I urge you to merge media in Sri Lanka to reduce the numbers. So the government can use the media effectively to inform and educate the people about the government’s policies. I urge to educate the media editors about the role of media.

    I also urge to implement English as a compulsory subject in O/L and A/L. Currently, English is not compulsory to pass in A/L to enter university, but you are offering university degrees in English, this is a laughable policy. I also urge you to declare English is the only official language in 2030, and prepare the younger generation to implement this policy. We should only allow students to study Tamil and Sinhala language in those languages. All the other subjects must be taught in English. Continuing to offer other subjects in Tamil and Sinhala languages is difficult, because you need teachers who have the ability to teach in those languages. Plus it will continue to keep Tamils in the North and East, and Sinhalese in the South and West. This wil not help the country to integrate. If you train them in English you can send teachers to anywhere in the country. You want this country to become like Singapore, but you hardly implement a decent policy.

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