Train services to Beliatte within 2 years

Construction work of the Matara-Kataragama Railway track from Matara to Beliatte is now underway.  Minister of Transport Kumara Welgama said that train services from Matara to Beliatte will be started within two years fulfilling a long standing aspiration of the people of the South. He added that the extension of the new railway line from Matara to Kataragama is a flagship project in the development plan of the Government.

Speaking at a function held at SLTB Depot in Matara, the Minister said that people prefer to travel by train than buses and a significant improvement has been made to the railway services.  The elimination of fraud and corruption will boost revenue in both these institutions, he also said. Several parliamentarians and provincial politicians attended the function

The Chinese Government through its Export-Import (Exim) Bank of China approved a loan of $278.2m on concessional terms for the construction of Phase I of Matara-Kataragama Rail Track Project in Sri Lanka.

The project is expected to meet this demand for transport while providing an environmentally friendly mode of transport. In addition, the new railway line will also benefit commuters and transportation of goods from remote areas of the Southern Province of Sri Lanka.

This project is planned to be implemented in three phases. Under Phase I, construction of the 26.75km long single broad gauge railway line from Matara to Beliatta will be carried out. Phase II and Phase III include the construction of railway lines from Beliatta to Hambantota and Hambantota to Kataragama respectively. (niz+)

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