US hails Sri Lanka’s decision to approve deal

The United States today welcomed Sri Lanka’s decision to approve the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) grant of USD 480 million after much delay and controversy.

The US Embassy in Colombo said that under the agreement Sri Lanka will retain oversight and control of all aspects of the proposed projects.

The Embassy said the grant includes investments to reduce traffic congestion in Colombo, modernize bus service, and upgrade interprovincial roads in the center of the country.

It also includes support for historically under-resourced Government of Sri Lanka initiatives to improve land administration.

The Cabinet today approved the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) grant of US$ 480 million.

Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera had submitted a proposal on the grant to the cabinet today and it was approved.

Earlier, President Maithripala Sirisena had said that he will not approve the deal after the main opposition had raised concerns over the agreement.

There had been concerns that under the proposed MCC deal the US will gain control over land in Sri Lanka. The US rejected the claims. (Colombo Gazette)