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Gammon to launch Dubai-model Free Zone in Lanka
BY MOHAN VADAYAR June 25, 2015
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COLOMBO/DUBAI: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia-based Gammon Middle East is all set to invest $1.2 billion to develop a Dubai-model Free Zone in Sri Lanka.

The leading Free Zone industrial infrastructure development group Gammon has concluded preliminary agreement at a day-long discussion held between the Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and Chairman of Gammon Middle East Group Shaikh Rafik Mohammed in Colombo recently.

The biggest motivation to Sri Lanka to enter the Free Zone segment came from the example set by Dubai, which had astounded the world with its Free Zone projects, Shaikh Rafik Mohammed said.

Dubai is the first one among the UAE emirates to have successfully implemented Free Zone projects. It was the realisation that such projects implemented with far-sightedness are indispensable for the development of any country in the present era. This attracted Sri Lanka towards the concept of Free Zones, he added.

The Sri Lankan Government is very much interested in associating with the Gammon Group, which has already proved its credibility by successfully completing major infrastructure development projects, according to President Maithripala Sirisena and Sri Lanka will provide 700 acres of land to Gammon for the project in the eastern province of the island nation, Rafik Mohammed quoted Sirisena as saying.

According to Rafik Mohammed, the “Gammon Group is immensely glad to have accepted the responsibility to implement various development projects in Sri Lanka including the Free Zone, a Knowledge City, hospitals and roads.”

He described the meeting with the Sri Lankan President as quite productive and pointed out that Sri Lanka was a country with an immense potential for development.

“The country has great possibilities for both sea and land transportation. Since the establishment of internal peace in the country, many Indian firms have started showing interest in investing in Sri Lanka and the Free Zone would open up new doors for them.” Rafik Mohammed said.

Gammon had developed free zone projects in Kirgistan and many othercountries. Rafik Mohammed is also holding Kirgystan’s foreign economic investment directorship.

The discussions were attended by various ministers from Sri Lanka including the Minister for Home Affairs, Amir Ali Shahabdeen and top officials from the country along with the representatives of Gammon Group OM Abubecker and Mohammed Rasuluddin.

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