Sri Lanka to develop Hamilton Canal as a tourism project
Sri Lanka’s State Minister of Tourism Promotion Arundika Fernando has reportedly said that the country’s tourism authorities with the assistance of several other ministries are looking at redeveloping Hamilton canal (Dutch Canal), which is a 14.5 km (9 mi) canal connecting Puttalam to Colombo, passing through Negombo as a project to boost the tourism industry.
The canal was constructed by the British in 1802 and completed in 1804.
The Minister has stated that the Dutch Canal would be converted in to a major tourism attraction similar to canals in Europe. “We will also connect it to the Colombo Port City making it a more viable venture,” he has been quoted as saying.
Developing the Hamilton Canal was first undertaken by Sri Lanka’s former Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa in 2008 and Rs. 600 million was invested under a development plan drawn up by the Moratuwa University.
“This project will also increase the value of tourism in Negombo,” Fernando has said.
According to the local media, the canal and its vicinity is of much environmental importance since the area is home to different species of fish, birds and plants and rich in bio-diversity, making it ideal for ecotourism.
“We will also offer land for investors to open restaurants and motels around the Dutch canal,” the Minister has further noted, adding that in addition, a mini cruise would also be introduced from the Colombo Port city.
The local media has also noted that the project will also help the prawn farming industry since it would provide less contaminated water to prawn farms.
Sri Lanka’s tourism industry is a fast growing economic sector in the island. The continuous increase recorded in the tourist arrivals to the country has in turn helped boost foreign investments to Sri Lanka’s tourism sector. Sri Lanka is also featured as a must visit destination by globally renowned travel publications. All these have resulted in the expansion of business/investment opportunities in Sri Lanka’s tourism industry.
|Article Code :||VBS/AT/20200117/Z_3|