Rehabilitation and reactivation of the Elephant Pass Saltern - in 2014 the Ministry of Economic Development has provided Rs.100 mn. under the "Uthuru Wasanthaya". Programme to rehabilitate and reactivate 330 acres of Saltern as Phase I to achieve an estimated salt production of 20,000 MT per annum and development work to rehabilitate infrastructure such as sea water reservoir, evaporation pans, crystallization pans and salt platforms are currently being undertaken. In 2015 it has been planned to rehabilitate and reactivate an additional 447 acres as Phase II to produce a further 25,000 to 30,000 MT of salt per annum. The estimated cost of Phase II to be initiated in 2015 is Rs.125 mn.; and
Strengthening the Fishnet Factories in Weerawila and Lunuwila to support and strengthen fish production - currently the Weerawila Fishnet Factory has a production capacity of 120 MT per annum and Lunuwila Factory has a capacity of 180 MT per annum. It is proposed to modernize these two factories at a cost of Rs.99.5 mn. in 2015.
2. Implementation of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation Free Trade Area (BIMSTEC FTA) - BIMSTEC comprises of Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Myanmar, Nepal and Bhutan and the main objective of this regional grouping is to foster socio-economic progress of the member countries by promoting co-operation in eight priority sectors, namely, Trade and Investment, Technology, Transportation and Communication, Tourism, Fisheries, Energy, Agriculture and Human Resources Development. It provides a unique link between South Asia and Southeast Asia. The proposal made by Hon. Rishad Bathiudeen, Minister of Industry and Commerce, to confirm the Negative List of Sri Lanka under BIMSTEC FTA, which has been prepared in consultation with the relevant state sector authorities, was approved by the Cabinet.
3. Purchasing of Euro - Lanka Hostel Building - the proposal made by Hon. S.B. Dissanayake, Minister of Higher Education, to purchase the land in extent of 74.5 perches and the building situated at G.H. Perera Mawatha, Boralesgamuwa, at a price valued by the Chief Government Valuer, to be developed to provide accommodation for about 1200 students of the University of Sri Jayawardenapura, was approved by the Cabinet.
4. Memorandum of Understanding for the Collaboration between the Ministry of External Affairs of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Co-operation of the Kingdom of Spain - the proposed areas for co-operation under this Memorandum of Understanding include combating terrorism and transnational organized crime, water, sanitation and hygiene, renewable energy, agricultural and environmental policies, sustainable tourism, educational and cultural exchanges, cooperation in institution building as well as multilateral cooperation within the Framework of the United - Nations.The proposal made by Hon. (Prof.) G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, to take appropriate action for the entry into force of the above Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two countries, was approved by the Cabinet.
5. The Future Programme for the Expansion of the National Grid towards Wind Power and Solar Power Electricity Generation for the Optimum use of Traditional Renewable Energy - Small Scale Power Generation Sector through renewable energy sources has contributed effectively to the generation of electricity in the country and, to reach the target of 20% of the power supply by the year 2020 through renewable power generation, wind power, solar power and biomass sources will have to be utilized and it will be necessary to accelerate the development activities associated with it. The joint proposal made by Hon.Susil Premajayantha, Minister of Environment and Renewable Energy and Hon. (Mrs.) Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Minister of Power and Energy, to appoint an Officials' Committee to be chaired jointly by the Secretaries of the two Ministries and comprising of relevant officials, to submit recommendations for the achievement of the goals with regard to renewable energy, was approved by the Cabinet.
6. Renovation of the Building Complex owned by the Teachers' College, Maharagama for the Establishment of the New College of Education on Business Studies and Entrepreneurship Studies - with the view to commencing scheduled teaching activities at this Institution as early as possible and for the optimum utilization of the premises, the proposal made by Hon. Bandula Gunawardena, Minister of Education, to entrust the renovation activities of the buildings, to the Central Engineering Consultancy Bureau (CECB), was approved by the Cabinet.
7. Memorandum of Understanding between the Ministry of Culture and the Arts of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Chinese Academy of Sciences of the People's Republic of China - the proposal made by Hon. T.B. Ekanayake, Minister of Culture and the Arts, for signing of the above Memorandum of Understanding concerning the joint project in search for wreckage of Zheng He's Fleets off the coast of Sri Lanka, was approved by the Cabinet.
8. Kundasale - Haragama Water Supply Project - this Water Supply Project has been proposed to address the severe shortage in drinking water faced by the domestic and the commercial consumers in the rapidly developing and expanding areas falling under the proposed Water Supply Project. The proposal made by Hon. Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Water Supply and Drainage, to award the above contract as recommended by the Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee (SCAPC), was approved by the Cabinet.
9. Implementation of Priority Water Supply Projects with funding secured from Local Banks - at present pipe borne drinking water supply coverage in the Island is 44%. The Government intends to enhance the pipe borne water supply coverage up to 60% by the year 2020 and it is proposed to engage local contractors with local bank financing for the purpose. Cabinet approval has already been granted for the investment ofRs. 29.1 billion for 30 water supply projects and a further Rs.10.095 pillion for 04 additional water supply projects. The proposal made by Hon. Dinesh Gunawardena, Minister of Water Supply and Drainage, to award the contracts for the following water supply projects as recommended by the Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee (SCAPC), was approved by the Cabinet:
• Medirigiriya Water Supply Project - Phase II; and
• Ettampitiya Water Supply Project.
10. Clean Energy & Network Efficiency Improvement Project - Project 2: 132kV Transmission Infrastructure - Lot - C: Procurement of Plant - Lot C-l : From Thulhiriya to Kegalle - 22.5 km, Single Zebra, from Polpitiya to New Polpitiya - 1.5 km, Twin Zebra, from Athurugiriya to Padukka - 10 km, Twin Zebra - Lot C-2 : From Athurugiriya to Kolonnawa 15 km - the proposal made by Hon. (Mrs.) Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Minister of Power and Energy, to award the above contract as recommended by Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee (SCAPC), was approved by the Cabinet.
11. Rehabilitation of Rail track from Anuradhapura to Omantai under the Indian Line of Credit - subsequent to the commencement of the reconstruction of the Northern railway line and Talaimannar railway line, the construction works in sections of track from Omantai to Pallai and from Medawachchiya to Madhu Road have been completed at present and the balance sections up to Kankesanthurai and Talaimannar are scheduled to be completed by the end of this year. On completion of the above, trains could be operated at a maximum speed of 100 kmph between Kankesanthurai and Omantai; and Talaimannar and Medawachchiya sections. It is proposed to rehabilitate the railway track, 62 km in length between Anuradhapura and Omantai with the balance funds available under the above Line of Credit. The proposal made by Hon. Kumara Welgama, Minister of Transport, for the Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee (SCAPC) assisted by a Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC), to evaluate the technical/financial proposal submitted by the Indian company, was approved by the Cabinet.
12. Participation at the International Monetary Fund/World Bank Annual Meetings - 2014, held in Washington DC from 7th to 12th October 2014 - a delegation led by Hon. (Dr.) Sarath Amunugama, Minister (Senior) for International Monetary Co-operation and Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning, including a team of Senior Officials from the General Treasury and the Central Bank of Sri Lanka had represented Sri Lanka at the above Annual Meetings. The meetings had highlighted global economic outlook which focuses on emerging economic, political and social issues related to advance economies, emerging markets and developing countries. The delegation has had fruitful discussions with the delegates of other countries who had participated at the above meetings. The above information was provided to the Cabinet by Hon. (Dr.) Sarath Amunugama, Minister (Senior) for International Monetary Co-operation and Deputy Minister of Finance and Planning.
13. Construction of Kokilai Bridge and Approaches across Kokilai Lagoon on Mullaitivu - Kokilai - Pulmudai Road - development of the road network which is currently underway connecting 38,000 villages will enable better access to nearly 80% of the population living in rural areas. The Mullaitivu - Kokilai - Pulmudai Road has been identified as a priority road for development with the view to providing continuous land connectivity on the coastal belt between the Eastern Province and the Northern Province. It is proposed to construct a bridge across the Kokilai Lagoon which will greatly reduce the distance between Mullaitivu and Pulmudai by about 100 km. The proposal made by H.E. the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Finance and Planning, to proceed with the activities relating to loan arrangements for the purpose, was approved by the Cabinet.
14. Obtaining 50,000 MT of Rice from the Government of Bangladesh to ensure Food Security - the proposal made by H.E. the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Finance and Planning, to purchase 50,000 MT of rice from Bangaladesh, on Government to Government basis through Lanka Sathosa Ltd., to be sold at an affordable price to the consumers, to meet the demand during the forthcoming festive season, was approved by the Cabinet.
15. Northern Expressway Project - Award of Contract Packages 02 to 06 to Local Contractors - the Government has given high priority for the construction of the portion of the Northern Expressway from Enderamulla to Galewela and the portion of the Link Expressway from Pothuhera to Galagedara. The proposal made by H.E. the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Highways, Ports and Shipping, to award the contracts for the following contract packages 02 to 06 for the construction of the Northern Expressway from Veyangoda to Galewela.as recommended by the Standing Cabinet Appointed Procurement Committee (SCAPC), was approved by the Cabinet:
• package 02 - Veyangoda - Meerigama (16.0 km);
• package 03 - Meerigama - Nakalagamuwa (18.0 km);
• package 04 - Nakalagamuwa - Alakoladeniya (20.1 km);
• package 05 - Alakoladeniya - Meddekatiya (16.9 km); and
• package 06 - Meddekatiya - Galewela (19.0 km).
16. Colombo National Highways Project funded by the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) - Award of Contract for providing Consultancy Services for Construction Supervision - the Government has received a loan of US$ 50 Million from the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) towards the cost of Colombo National Highways. Project for upgrading 65.45 km of key highways and for the reconstruction of Bridge No. 2/1 on Narahenpita - Nawala - Nugegoda Road. The proposal made by H.E. the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Highways, Ports and Shipping, to award the contract for providing consultancy services for the construction supervision of civil works under the above project as recommended by 'the Cabinet Appointed Consultants Procurement Committee (CPCC), was approved by the Cabinet.
17. SAARC Framework Agreement for Energy Cooperation (Electricity) - during the Fifth Meeting of the SAARC Energy Ministers held on 17th October 2014 in New Delhi, India, the above draft Agreement prepared by the Government of India was adopted by the Energy Ministers and approval of each Member State has to be obtained for the said draft Agreement to be signed at the forthcoming SAARC Summit. The objective of this Agreement is to allow cross border trade of electricity on mutually agreed and on voluntary basis, subject to laws, rules and regulations of the respective Member States and the proposed Agreement will be an effective tool for ensuring energy security in the country as well as in the South Asia Region. The proposal made by Hon. (Mrs.) Pavithra Wanniarachchi, Minister of Power and Energy, to sign the above Agreement and to proceed with the activities related thereto, was .approved by the Cabinet.
18. Re-allocation of funds for Economic Development Projects - 2014 for Kesbewa Urban Council Area - Kesbewa town has been declared by the Urban Development Authority (UDA) as an "Urban Development Area" and accordingly a development plan has been prepared by the UDA through which a number of development projects have been identified to improve the basic facilities in the town; The "Piliyandala Town Centre Development Project" is one such main project. In addition, the following projects have been identified by the Ministry of Economic Development to upgrade the social requirements of the Kesbewa town area:
• Construction of Commercial building for pavement hawkers at Piliyandala;
• Construction of a Child & Maternity Clinical buildings at Rathmaldeniya;
• Re-development of Dole Kanatta Cemetery; and
• Construction of walkway in the Somaweera Chandrasiri Play Ground.
The proposal made by H.E. the President, in his capacity as the Minister of Defence and Urban Development, to implement the the projects through the Urban Development Authority (UDA), was approved by the Cabinet.