China is to fund the 114.5 Km Matara-Kataragama Ralway line extension project. A high level team from the Ministry of Transport has visited the Chinese capital Beijing to discuss funding arrangements for this project via China’s Exim Bank.
Sources from the Ministry of Transport said that the discussion by the team led by Secretary Dhammika Perera will centre on concluding the financing for the extension between Matara and Beliatta track spanning 27 kilometres estimated to cost 270 million U.S.Dolalrs. They said that funding for the follow up extensions up to Kataragama will also be discussed.
The Government has proposed to expand the railway services up to Kataragama in three stages.
Stage one will cover Matara to Beliatte (27 km), stage two Beliatte to Hambanthota (48 km) and Stage 3 Hambanthota to Kataragama (39.5 km).
This project will greatly facilitate cargo transport to and from the Hambantota Harbour and the Mattala Internatonal Airport.