Sri Lank has begun to develop several new tourism zones in the North and East of the island nation. The government has identified the coastal towns of Vakarai in the Batticaloa district and Pulmoddai in Trincomalee district, both in the Eastern Province, and Silavathurai in Mannar district in the Northwest as new tourism zones.
The Deputy Economic Development Minister recently said the government is in the process of identifying land for two tourism zones in Silavathurai and Pulmoddai.
“Once the land acquisition is completed we will commence the infrastructure development in the area before calling for bids,” the Minister said.
The amount of investment expected to be generated through the new tourism zones in the North and East has still not been estimated, since the project is still at the initial stage. However, the government has decided on the long-term lease of an acre of land at Rs. 20 million for tourism development.
In Vakarai, the government is to allocate 73 acres for tourism development, 80 acres in Silavathurai and 100 acres in Pulmoddai.
These three areas are the latest to be added to the list of tourism zones that already exist in the East, in Pasikudah, Kuchchaweli, and Arugam Bay.
According to Abeywardena, the country has received US$ 523 million worth of investments in the tourism sector this year.