Sri Lanka’s West Container Terminal (WCT) Project:
Sri Lanka said it will develop the West Container Terminal (WCT) at the Colombo Port, along with India and Japan.
- The decision comes a month after the Rajapaksa government ejected the two partners from a 2019 tripartite agreement to jointly develop the East Container Terminal (ECT), citing resistance to “foreign involvement”.
- While the High Commission of India had “approved” Adani Ports, which was to invest in the ECT project earlier, Japan is yet to name an investor.
- In the ECT project agreed upon earlier, the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) was to hold majority 51%, but in the WCT proposal, India and Japan will be accorded 85% stake, as is the case in the nearby Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT), where China Merchants Port Holdings Company Limited holds 85%.
- The WCT is adjacent to the China-run CICT and just a couple of kilometers away from the China-backed Port City being built on reclaimed land, making it a strategically desirable spot for India, whose concerns over China’s presence in Sri Lanka are well known.