Jan 03, Colombo: The proposal made by Minister of Finance and Mas Media, Mangala Samaraweera to obtain the support of the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for the construction of a light rail system in the Colombo city has received the Cabinet approval.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency has agreed to provide financial and technical assistance to establish a Light Rail Transit (LRT) System in Colombo in order to minimize the heavy traffic congestion existing in Colombo and its suburbs.
This LRT System has been designed to establish the connectivity between the major Administrative Hubs with commercial corridors and the densely populated residential areas situated adjacent to Colombo. This LRT System will also be developed so as to provide easy access to the Expressway Network and Multi-Model Transport Hubs.
Under the LRT System project, it has been planned to construct a LRT System 17 km in length with 16 Stations from the Multi-Model Transport Hub in Colombo Fort to Malabe Depot with an investment of JPY 246,641 million from Japan.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency has extended its willingness to grant JPY 200,415 million (US$ 1.86 billion) out of the total expenditure anticipated for the project.
The proposal made by Finance Minister to conduct loan Negotiations and to enter into a loan agreement for the purpose, was approved by the Cabinet.