Given the enormous and varying development initiatives that are underway in the Hambantota District, the Council for Business with Britain (CBB) in cooperation with the Hambantota District Chamber of Commerce (HDCC) felt it opportune to organise a field trip to Hambantota to expose key decision makers among its membership to the major infrastructure and other developments that are taking place in the south of the country.
The highlight of the trip was a visit to the soon-to-be-operational Hambantota Port, which was followed by visits to the sites of the Hambantota Convention Centre and the Cricket Stadium, culminating with an interactive session with the members of Hambantota District Chamber of Commerce.
The CBB members’ first stop was the Sri Lanka Ports Authority Project Office in Hambantota, where they were provided a firsthand report of the port project and were shown a scale model detailing the various phases of the project. Thereafter the members were taken round the port site to experience firsthand the vast scale and nature of this undertaking. The members then visited the new cricket stadium, still under construction, but already having a laid down cricket pitch and also the new Convention Centre funded by the Korean Govt and being built according to a Korean design. The expected opening of this Convention Centre will be April 2011, and will hold 1,500 people and have the ability to host several smaller functions in eight committee rooms.
Finally the members visited the Hambantota District Chamber of Commerce where they met with Azmi Thassim, Director General and members of the Hambantota District Chamber of Commerce. The CBB Members were shown a comprehensive video of the Chambers activities and discussed ways that the two organisations could interact.
It was a timely visit, since the Hambantota District Chamber will shortly be embarking on a trade mission to the UK as guests of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce. Overall it was an excellent field trip with all members gaining a better insight and understanding of the project.