The Sri Lankan government is to enter into a loan agreement with HSBC for 28.2 million pounds (about 44.6 million U.S. dollars) to fund 210 steel bridges, a minister said here on Thursday.
Sri Lanka is investing heavily in infrastructure after the end of a three decade conflict in 2009 and the government has earlier given approval to award the contract of 210 steel bridges to the UK company Cleveland Bridges.
The latest loan from the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank (HSBC) of UK will provide the lion's share of the funding for this project, said Cabinet spokesman and Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella.
An additional 6.8 million pounds (about 10.7 million U.S. dollars) will be funded by state-run People's Bank, said Rambukwella.
The HSBC loan has a repayment period of 13 years including a three year grace period while the People's Bank share must be paid back in 14 years.
"Construction of these bridges connecting villages will facilitate great economic integration of rural communities," said Rambukwella.