Sri Lanka seeks FDI in the Port City as India keeps an close eye on the situation
Official sources in New Delhi said they were "keeping a careful eye" on the project and its "security ramifications" as Sri Lanka invited international investment into the Colombo Port City, which it billed as a "totally Sri Lankan project."
“If it's just a commercial endeavour, that's their [Sri Lanka's] decision... We would continue to engage Sri Lanka while keeping our national interests in mind,” a government source in New Delhi said, as the final form of the Bill, whose blueprint the Speaker of the Sri Lankan Parliament signed on Thursday, was awaited. The ‘Colombo Port City Economic Commission Act' is still under wraps.
Concerns about the newly passed legislation controlling the Colombo Port City, which some worry would become a "Chinese enclave," were addressed. A group of government ministers in Sri Lanka's capital said the $1.4 billion Port City, billed as a financial centre, has the potential to create 83,000 jobs and attract up to $15 billion in investment.
Constitutional experts and opposition legislators contend that the 269-acre "financial hub," which will be built on reclaimed land adjacent to Colombo's coastline, will be immune from Sri Lankan law in addition to being tax-free. It is seen as a "threat" to Sri Lanka's sovereignty by some in the country, notably the political opposition, trade unions, and powerful Buddhist monks.