Sri Lanka to develop Galle Yacht marina by ‘Swiss challenge’
Posted on February 15th, 2017

Dr Sarath Obeysekera

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will use the ‘Swiss Challenge’ method to identify a developer for a yacht marina in the Southern port of Galle.The Cabinet of Ministers had approved a proposal by Ports Minister Arjuna Ranatugna to find a investor to develop a Yacht marina in Galle by Swiss Challenge the state information office said.
The Swiss challenge involves giving other parties a chance to better and proposal made by an unsolicited investor.
Galle port is already a popular port of call for ocean going yachts.
However Sri Lanka itself does not have a significant fleet of yachts, or marina or a culture of owning and using yachts despite being surrounded by the sea. (Colombo/Feb11/2017)

In one of my articles I  defined how Swiss Challenge is executed in order to circumvent the award of contracts to a party with an  unsolicited proposals. General opinion among public and auditors is that Swiss Challenge may be a coveted way of awarding the contract to a known party ,and yet let other contenders have the right to overbid .And yet the original proposer who worked tirelessly hand in hand with the state agency has the right for first refusal .

It could have been more transparent if the state agency calls EOI with basic guidelines and invite the interested parties to come up with their intent to work with the state agency at their own cost .Once a reliable party is selected ,state agency can work together and prepare the RFP together and advertise so that others can bid.

Next problem we may face is whether government has to amend the FR and AR’s so that Swiss Challenge Method cannot be challenged again for violation of  Fundamental Rights.

As an investor who has an agreement to develop part of the Galle Harbour as a Yacht Repair and Building yard ,we have been slapped  with an  annual  lease rates of  land within the harbour in line with government valuer.We have noted that if any investor is forced to pay the same rates ,I can guarantee that investment will not be viable .

SLPA should  also go ahead with building offshore breakwater  with a soft loan from Jaica ( Japanese agency) .I am sure that investing in Galle harbour to be developed as a Marina will be viable.

It has taken close to three years for us to get all relevant approvals to sign the investment agreement ,and I wonder whether tenure of the government will expire before signing of the investment agreement with SLPA for development of a Marina because our bureaucratic procedures take over three years to approve any project .

We better keep eating Swiss Chocolates ,enjoy wearing Swiss Watches ,taste Swiss Cheese,use Swiss Knives  and enjoy everything Swiss rather than try to bite” Swiss challenge .

Dr Sarath Obeysekera

2 Responses to “Sri Lanka to develop Galle Yacht marina by ‘Swiss challenge’”

  1. Christie Says:

    At the time British landed here to take over the Dutch possessions the French were to send an army of Swiss mercenaries; but unfortunately or fortunately the winds were against the French.

    These days not many yachts are under sails.

    Anyway Sarath if you are a Sinhalese there are no hope to succeed unless you are an Indian colonial parasite.

  2. Nimal Says:

    This great news to earn money for the country by renting out some mooring space for private yachts.Tangalle fishing harbour is good as well.

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