(Press release from the Embassy of France in Sri Lanka and the Maldives)
H.E. Mrs. Christine ROBICHON, Ambassador of France to Sri Lanka and the Maldives and Dr. P.B. Jayasundara, Secretary, Ministry of Finance and Planning signed a protocol to finance the widening and reconstruction of bridges on national road network on 20th December 2011 at the Ministry of Finance and Planning.
Sri Lanka is a recipient of The Emerging Country Fund (RPE), governed by the French Ministry of Economy, Finance and Industry, beside operations funded by the French Development Agency (AFD). The RPE fund has been utilized to assist Sri Lanka after the Tsunami in 2004. Project for the Trincomalee Water Supply Project and for the provision of heavy medical equipment to several public hospitals (oxygen concentrators, operating theatres, equipments for cardiology and radiology) are currently being implemented under this fund.
The new protocol signed the 20th of december between France and Sri Lanka under the Emerging Country Fund open a new area of assistance, no longer linked to post tsunami projects, but dedicated to contribute to Sri Lanka’s reconstruction and economic development.
The new concessionary loan of 22 050 000 euros (USD 31 million) will be used to supply 46 metallic bridges to the Road Development Authority to be distributed island wide. This priority project of the Sri Lankan Government will be realized on a co-financing, the cost of civil works being borne by the Sri Lankan Government. The French part of the financing is a French Treasury loan at a very concessional rate on a long term basis.