Sri Lankan Govt focuses on speedy development of Jaffna

By NNN-LK News

Colombo : The Sri Lankan Government is focusing its attention on speeding up the development and deliver of the essential goods of Jaffna Peninsula despite of the tremendous obstacles posed by the conflict in the area.

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According to the Ministry of Foreign Affaires, a SCOPP team has recently visited 13 outlets in Kudathanai, Atchuweli and Jaffna examine the current situation.

They have conducted distribution and price audits to ascertain the nature of the flow of goods and the stability of consumer prices in Jaffna. According to their report, overall availability of food in Jaffna has improved and the prices of most essential items have stabilized.

The team had also had the opportunity of visiting key infrastructure projects coordinated by the UN Office for Project Services (UNOPS), including the housing project at Kudathanai.

It was found that 76 houses had been completed and occupied (out of a total of 150 planned to be built). The rest of the houses will be completed and handed over by August 25, 2007. 3 of the 5 schools to be constructed under the project had been completed and that the other two would be completed by mid October.

The team also held meetings with the Jaffna Chamber of Commerce officials during which they discussed the problems faced by the trading community.

Difficulties in transporting produce from Jaffna to markets in Colombo, the pilferage and damage of goods from Colombo, the high price of cement, and they minority of livelihood opportunities were pointed out by the Chamber of Commerce Officials.

The Government Agent, Jaffna, Mr. Ganesh and the Bishop of Jaffna, Fr.Saundranayagam echoed the concerns of the Chamber of Commerce, but said that the governance structure in Jaffna had improved over the past two months.