The Millennium Challenge Corporation Agreement 
Posted on May 31st, 2019

Anil Amarasekera Co-President National Joint Committee

Hon. Ranil Wickramasinghe,
The Prime Minister of Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka,
The Prime Minister’s 0ffice,
No. 58, Sir Ernest de Silva Mawatha
Colombo 7.

Dear Sir,

The Millennium Challenge Corporation Agreement

The National Joint Committee is committed to protect and preserve the unity and territorial integrity of our nation. We believe that Sri Lanka should follow a foreign policy of nonalignment. Due to the fact that Sri Lanka is strategically located in the Indian Ocean the country needs to remain nonaligned and refrain from getting involved in the geopolitical confrontation that is developing between America and China, through agreements that would enable these countries to gain a foothold in Sri Lanka.

The nonaligned policy was compromised when the Acquisition and Cross Service Agreement (ACSA) was first signed in 2007 and subsequently renewed in 2017. This agreement is now contemplated to be further extended to a Status of Forces Agreement (ACSA) with immunity being provided to foreign servicemen on Sri Lankan soil. There is another controversial agreement with the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) of America that is supposed to have been signed on 27th of April 2019.

Therefore the National Joint Committee at its last meeting decided to request you to release to the public the text of the MCC agreement. The information available in certain websites argue that as a result of this MCC agreement with America the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of our nation will be lost to posterity. These websites are given below for your information.

The articles in these websites point out that the MCC agreement will create an economic corridor extending from Trincomalee to Colombo containing a land mass of 1.2 million acres which would be leased for 200 years to America for sum of 480 million dollars. To accommodate the acquisition of land for this proposed economic corridor these articles state that two new laws namely the State Land Bank bill and Land Special Provision Bill are to be enacted.  

Furthermore these articles indicate that the area covered by this economic corridor will contain Eppawala phosphates, Limonite, Thorium, Monazite and rare earth metals Cerium and Lanthanum. It is also pointed out in these articles that the law applicable within this economic corridor would be the American law and not the Sri Lankan law.

Therefore if such an agreement is implemented the country will be divided into two parts by this economic corridor with the northern part being available to create the nation of Eelam as envisaged in the separatist ideology.  It is in this northern part that the ancient cities of Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa and Kurunangala are situated.

Freeport McMoRan which is an American Company in the year 2000 tried to mine the phosphates in Eppawala that is now within the proposed economic corridor by acquiring land using the Ministry of Industrial Development. However this was not made possible as the Fundamental Rights of the people to possess their land was upheld by the Supreme Court. When delivering judgment in this Eppawala case Justice Amarasinghe quoted what Arahat Mahinda had said to King Devanampiyatissa 

O great King, the birds of the air and the beasts have as equal a right to live and move about in any part of the land as thou; The land belongs to the people and all living beings; thou art only the guardian of it ….   

Therefore if the land belongs to the people and the King who was the head of state was only a guardian what right has a Prime Minister to sign an agreement to establish an economic corridor and deprive the people of the land on which they live?

However given the fact that you did sign a peace agreement as the Prime Minister with the LTTE leader Prabhakaran in 2002 sans the approval of the then head of state or the cabinet and been made aware that MCC has recommended a 500 million dollars payment to Sri Lanka subject to the approval of the American Congress, would you be kind enough to inform the National Joint Committee and the public the text of this agreement and if it was signed by you on or about 27th April 2019.

Yours faithfully,

Anil Amarasekera/-

Lt Col. A.S.Amarasekera. (Retd.)

Co-President National Joint Committee.

2 Responses to “The Millennium Challenge Corporation Agreement ”

  1. Dilrook Says:

    This is the Millennium Challenge Corporation Sri Lanka Compact for 2019-2024.

    There is nothing more to it than this. No doubt it is harmful and dangerous. However, compared to the ACSA deal (signed in 2007 and extended in 2017) and the impending SOFA deals, this is less dangerous.

    Too many fictitious matter has been said about this without facts. We must see it for what it really is and compare it against other more dangerous deals.

    I fear the overemphasis on MCC compact is to divert attention from the extremely dangerous SOFA which will be signed by the next government. I take anyone challenge on this. If SOFA remains unsigned when this government leaves, the next government will definitely sign it. Robert Blake clearly indicated that recently.

    Millennium Challenge Corporation Sri Lanka Compact for 2019-2024

    The Board of Directors of the Millennium Challenge Corporation has approved a five-year, $480 million Compact with the Government of Sri Lanka aimed at reducing poverty through economic growth. The Compact seeks to assist the Sri Lanka Government in addressing two of the country’s binding constraints to economic growth: (1) inadequate transport logistics infrastructure and planning; and (2) lack of access to land for agriculture, the services sector, and industrial investors.

    The Compact will be composed of two projects: a Transport Project and a Land Project. The Transport Project aims to increase the relative efficiency and capacity of the road network and bus system in the Colombo Metropolitan Region and to reduce the cost of transporting passengers and goods between the central region of the country and ports and markets in the rest of the country. The goal of the Land Project is to increase the availability of information on private land and underutilized state lands or all land in Sri Lanka to which the Government is lawfully entitled or which may be disposed of by the Government (“State Lands”) in order to increase land market activity. The Land Project would increase tenure security and tradability of land for smallholders, women, and firms through policy and legal reforms.

    Milestones in Compact Development

    Milestones in Compact Development

    Milestone Date Description
    Board Approval April 25, 2019

    MCC Board approves five-year Sri Lanka Compact.
    CN on Intent to Negotiate August 13, 2018

    MCC has delivered to the U.S. Congress a congressional notification (CN) of its intent to negotiate a Millennium Challenge Compact with the Government of Sri Lanka.
    Eligibility Notification December 19, 2017

    MCC Board reselects Sri Lanka to continue developing a compact.
    Constraints Analysis September 20, 2017

    The Government of Sri Lanka has completed a study to identify the most binding constraints that prevent private-sector led growth in Sri Lanka.
    Eligibility Notification December 13, 2016

    MCC Board of Directors selected Sri Lanka as eligible to develop a compact.

  2. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    Lt Col Amarasekere !!

    When you mention Limonite, my mind goes back to long years ago, when I used to visit Mineral Sands Corporation, Pulmoddai, during my Late Brother-in-Laws tenure as Chief Engineer and CEO. He was SRI WALPOLA. No one hardly walks barefoot on the beach after around 11.00am, as it is like walking on a heated zinc sheet. The sand was all metal, hence the heat. We enjoyed plenty of Sea Food over there.

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