President spearheads urban development drive

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President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has instructed officials to focus on the rapid development of several main cities in the country including Colombo.

A discussion centered on infrastructure and urban development was held at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday (11) with the participation of Ministry Secretaries, officials of the entities affiliated to the Urban Development Authority, officials of Road Development Authority, Board of Investments and the Ports Authority.

President Rajapaksa said that with the resumption of civilian life it is necessary to accelerate the development activities which were interrupted due to the pandemic. He emphasized the need to initiate new development activities by attracting investments instead of seeking foreign loans.

The President pointed to the necessity of upgrading of East and West Terminals of the Colombo Port immediately. The nature of the mechanism that would facilitate acquiring lands for development projects was also discussed. The construction of houses for low, middle, and high-income families will also begin.

The possibility of constructing housing schemes with all amenities and renting them out to the migrants was also explored, stated President’s Media Division.

President instructed the officials to resume all the large scale building construction and development work in the city of Colombo which has been discontinued due to various reasons, in consultation with relevant parties.

During the discussion, a decision was reached to expedite the work of the proposed road network connecting Colombo and other cities.

It was proposed to use un-utilized lands on either side of the roads for eco-friendly cultivation activities.

Secretary to the President P. B. Jayasundera was also present at the discussion.