President’s Office notes concerns in proposed agreement with US

The President’s Office has noted concerns in the proposed Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) agreement with the US.

In a statement issued this evening (Thursday), President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had instructed his office to make public the recommendations of the report compiled by an expert committee appointed by the Government to review the agreement.

According to the President’s Office, the report has raised a number of concerns on the agreement.

The report, which was handed over to the President today, notes that some clauses cannot be legally implemented.

Chairman of the expert committee Professor Lalithasiri Gunarunwan also noted concerns that the agreement cannot be amended if required, once signed.

He said that any agreement should be open for amendments through a formal understanding.

The programs supported by the grant were to reduce traffic congestion, improve public transportation in Colombo, upgrade provincial roads, and expand existing Government of Sri Lanka initiatives to improve land administration and strengthen the land rights of Sri Lankans.

The United States had denied claims that the US will own any land under the development assistance grant. The US had said that Sri Lanka will oversee and manage all grant-funded projects throughout the implementation of the five-year grant assistance agreement. (Colombo Gazette)