- Published on Thursday, 17 January 2013 10:07
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President Mahinda Rajapaksa will declare open Friday (18), South Asia’s largest fish export hub, the Dickowita fisheries harbor constructed at a cost of 51 million Euros. This harbor will be the one with the highest standards in the region.
41 Million Euros for this project was funded with a soft loan by Netherland and the harbour consists two terminals for local and international operations.
The harbour Basin with a depth more than six metres could berth more than 500 trawlers, multi day vessels and small time vessels in both piers.
The harbor has facilities for bunkering shipping vessels with four ice plants, four cool rooms, and fuel sheds, a large fish processing area, a large canteen, a fish net repairing facility and remote control operated boat lifting facility. It also has a fish auction hall, parking space for large containers and vehicles, and a special waste disposal system.
The new harbour is also equipped with modern conveyer belts to minimize post harvest loss thus ensuring high quality exports. The foreign trawlers could use the Southern terminal while the Northern terminal would be allocated to local fishermen.
The Harbour would also help in accommodating multi-day trawlers which were hitherto anchored in the Hamilton Canal and the Negombo Lagoon.
The Managing Director of Ceylon Fishery Harbour Corporation, Lal Samarasinghe said that the harbour would bring in valuable foreign exchange and would also help Sri Lanka to be self sufficient in fish products. He said that the project is a brain child of President Mahinda Rajapaksa and it fills a great void in the country for the fishing industry.
He said that already several international trawler operators from Japan and Europe had consented to bring in fish caught from international waters to Dickowita for processing and then for re-export. He said that they would also use the harbour for bunkering, supplies and for attending to their repairs and for many other services.
Samarasinghe also said that since the Katunayake international airport is situated close to the harbor the geographical location of the harbour is one of the biggest advantages for the foreigners to use this harbor.
The construction of the harbour was handled by BAM international of Netherlands and it has been constructed to comply with international standards. (niz)