Monday, April 28, 2008

Sri Lanka ready to welcome Iranian president

The Sri Lankan government said Monday that it is ready to welcome Iranian President Mahmoud Ahamadinejad who will arrive at Colombo for a two-day official visit Monday afternoon and unveil several Iran-funded projects.

Sri Lanka's Department of Government Information said in a statement that Ahamadinejad will be welcomed at the airport by SriLankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa, followed by meetings with President Rajapaksa, Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka and Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama.

On Tuesday, the Iranian president will inaugurate the Iranian funded 450-million-U.S. dollar Uma Oya irrigation project in Wellawaya in central Sri Lanka which will add 100 megawatts of power to the national grid.

The other major project due to be inaugurated on Tuesday by the Iranian president is the expansion of the Sapugaskanda refinery near Colombo which will make Sri Lanka self-sufficient in aviation fuel and bitumen.

The project envisages increasing the daily output capacity of 50,000 barrels to 150,000 barrels of refined oil.

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