9:40 PM

Iran to fund Uma Oya project

Irrigation Minister Jayatissa Ranaweera told Parliament yesterday that Surveys and geological investigations are being done for design and construction activities of the Uma Oya project.

This mega irrigation scheme estimated at US$ 590 million is scheduled to be completed by 2014. The Government ceremonially launched the construction work of this project on April 28, 2008 he said.

Of the total estimated cost of the project, US$ 450 million will be obtained from Export Development Bank of Iran (EDBI) as a loan while the balance US$ 140 million will be granted by the Sri Lankan Government.

The Minister was responding to an oral question raised by the JVP MP K.V. Samantha Vidyaratne.

Asked on the amount of money that has been obtained upto now, Minister Ranaweera said an agreement has been signed with Iran Government to obtain US$450 million.

In addition, Rs. 7060 million has been allocated by the Treasury for this project. The Uma Oya project consists of 45m high dam at Puhulpola on Uma Oya and the reservoir 30m high dam at Dyraba on Matotilla Oya and the reservoir, 3.8 km long link tunnel connecting Puhulpola and Dyraba reservoirs, 15.2 km long pressure tunnel from Dyraba to power station, underground Hydro-power station with 120mw installed capacity and 3.4 km long outlet tunnel from power station on Alikota-ara.

Meanwhile, the project has also planned to set up a power Transmission line from power station to grid sub station at Badulla and construct a 5 km long alternative road to replace the stretch of Welimada - Badulla road which will go under water due to creation of the Puhulpola reservoir," the Minister added.