Iran’s President to visit Sri Lanka and launch several water projects

Iran’s President to visit Sri Lanka and launch several water projects

By Easwaran Rutnam

Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi is to visit Sri Lanka in May and launch several water projects, amidst rising tensions in the Middle East.

According to the Tehran Times, Ebrahim Raisi will launch the Uma Oya Multipurpose project which includes two dams namely Dyraaba and Puhulpola and also 25 kilometers of water transmission tunnel.

The project also includes two major hydroelectric power plants each with a capacity of 60 megawatts.

The visit comes as tensions continue between Iran and Israel with Israel saying it will respond to Iran’s recent drone and missile attack as the threat of open warfare between the countries looms.

Iran launched over 300 missiles and drones at Israel in response to an attack launched by Israel on an Iranian embassy in Syria.

Meanwhile, the Tehran Times reported that the Uma Oya multipurpose project is regarded as one of the greatest technical and engineering service projects of Iranian companies in Sri Lanka.

The purpose of the project is to improve irrigation of 5000 acres of agricultural land, transferring 145 million cubic meters of water and generating 290 GW/h of power in a year.

One of the important features of the Uma Oya project is the scattered and diverse components of the project.

Tehran Times said that this project is one of the largest projects implemented by Iranian contractors abroad.

Back in August 2023, Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Ali Sabry visited Iran and met with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir Abdollahian in Tehran. During a joint press conference, the top Iranian diplomat called the visit “a turning point in Iran-Sri Lanka ties”.

Amir Abdollahian said the two foreign ministers had discussed cooperation at regional and international levels and will be expanding ties in the fields of trade, tourism, science, and culture.

“During our meeting, we discussed new possible agreements and also emphasized the implementation of the ones that have already been signed,” said the top diplomat.

According to Amir Abdollahian, the two sides also discussed the exchange of prisoners.

The foreign minister concluded his talks by reiterating the Iranian government’s priorities, saying that Tehran attaches great significance to cooperation with fellow Asian countries. He hoped that different nations in the continent could collaborate in a friendly and constructive manner.

Sabry, for his part, hailed Sri Lanka’s good and friendly relations with Iran. Before his visit, Sri Lankan media reported that the foreign minister would be trying to rejuvenate his country’s presence in the Iranian tea market.  (Colombo Gazette)

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