Berthing Programme

History & Milestones


Since 1918, the Port of Colombo had been administered by the Colombo Port Commission, a Government Department which was made responsible for the supply and maintenance of cargo-handling equipment and other infrastructure, pilotage services, docking and slipping. The government had funded all its activities. Stevedoring and shore handling activities were in the hands of several private Wharf age Companies. In 1958, the Port Cargo Corporation was set up to take over these activities performed by a multiplicity of operators. The Port Tally and Protective Services Corporation was formed in 1967 in order to perform on-board tallying and watchmen services on behalf of Agents.

The Sri Lanka Ports Authority was constituted under the provisions of the Sri Lanka Ports Authority Act, No. 51 of 1979 (subsequently amended by Act No. 7 of 1984 and Act No. 35 of 1984) on the 1st of August 1979, effecting the merger of the Colombo Port Commission Department and the two existing statutory Corporations. This resulted in a unified organization with a streamlined structure. The Ports Authority does not receive financial allocations from the government but operates on its own revenue and resources.



1505 - Port of Colombo was known to the Western World
1912 - Colombo Port was converted to a sheltered harbour
1913 - Colombo Port Commission Established
1954 - Inauguration of the Queen Elizabeth Quay
1954 - Completion of 16 alongside berths, transit sheds and warehouses
1958 - Port (Cargo) Corporation was founded
1979 - Sri Lanka Ports Authority was Formed
1980 - Inauguration Queen Elizabeth Terminal
1982 - Opening of New Bridge (Hartal Bridge over the Harbour Canal)
1982 - Installation of first Gantry Crane
1985 - Jaye Container Terminal - I was Built
1985 - Jaye Container Terminal - I was Built
1987 - Jaye Container Terminal - II was Built
1995 - Jaye Container Terminal III was Built
1996 - Jaye Container Terminal - IV was Built
1996 - Deepening of Main Channel to 15M depth
1996 - Handling of the 1,000,000th Container TEU with a year
1997 - Inauguration Oil Berth
1997 - Handling of the 1,500,000th Container TEU with a year
1998 - Inauguration Unity Container Terminal I
1998 - Signing of an agreement to foster friendly relationship
1999 - Commissioning of empty Container Yard
1999 - Commissioning of the Oluvil Lighthouse
1999 - Opening of the Oluvil Maritime Training Centre
1999 - Commencement – South Asia Gateway Terminal
1999 - Commencement of construction of 50,000 dwt. alongside berth
2000 - Commencement of Colombo South Harbour feasibility study
2000 - Commencement of Construction of third Berth in Galle Port
2000 - Inaugaration of Peliyagoda CFS
2000 - Commencement of a feasibility study - Port of Galle development
2000 - Commencement of North Pier Development Phase II
2000 - Inauguration of the One-Stop Documentation Centre
2001 - Inauguration of the New Jetty in Port of Galle
2001 - Completion of Stage I of QEQ(SAGT) development project
2001 - Commissioning of the dredger "Hansakawa"
2001 - Boom extension of Gantry Cranes at JCT III and IV
2001 - Commencement of the feasibility study for Port of Hambantota and inauguration of the
new training Institute and project Office
2002 - Inauguration of the Ashraff Quay (multi purpose Alongside Berth) in the Port of
2003 - Inauguration of Customer service Centre for LCL and break-bulk cargo
2003 - Opening of SLPA Maritime Museum
2003 - Ceremonial inauguration of Unity container Terminal with the completion of the civil
2003 - Ceremonial inauguration of container handling operations at Unity Container Terminal
2004 - The Port of Colombo has crossed the 2.2 million TEUs marks for the year 2004
2005 - Commencement of constructions of the Port and Housing Scheme in Oluwil.
2005 - Handled 2.45 million TEUs and achieved 10.6% against year 2004.
2006 - Commissioning of Container security Initiative and Megaport Initiative in the POC.
2006 - Signing of MOU for the proposed CMB Port Expansion project.
2006 - Signing of MOU concerning detailed design works of Hambantota Port Dev. Project.
2006 - Handling of Three Million Containers in the Port of Colombo.
2007 - Commencement of Construction work of the Hambantota Port Dev. Project.
2008 - Commencement of Construction work of Oluvil Port Project.
2008 - Commencement of Construction work of Colombo Port Expansion Project.
2008 - Signing of Contract agreement for construction of Bunkering facility and Tank farm at Hambantota.
2009 - Signing of MOU with APL shipping line.
2009 - Commencement of New Terminal Management IT System (NAVIS).
2010 - Ceremony of Sea Water filling to the Basin of Magampura Port (Hambantota) - 15-08-2010.
2010 - Ceremonial inauguration of cargo handling operations at Magampura Port (Hambantota) - 18-11-2010.
2010 - Handling of 2 Million Containers at the Jaya Container Terminal - (JCT).
2010 - Handling of 4 Million Containers at the port of Colombo.
2011 - Arrival of 06 Nos. New Gantry Cranes and 30 Nos. Transfer Cranes.
2011 - Capacity enhancement at colombo Oil Terminal of SLPA.
2011 - Arrival of 50 Nos. Terminal Tractors.
2011 - Arrival of 2nd Batch of Terminal Equipment - 03 Nos Gantry  Cranes & 11 Nos. Transfer Cranes.
2011 - Signing of Agreement forColombo Port Expansion Project - South Container Terminal.
2011 - Ground Breaking Ceremony at Magam Ruhunupura Mahinda Rajapaksha Port to open new business ventures.
2011 - Ground Breaking Ceremony for commencement of construction work of Colombo South Container Terminal.
2012 - Commencement of handling Ro - RO Vessels at Magam Ruhunupura Mahinda Rajapaksha Port.
2012 - Replacing the dilapidated existing bunker fuel pipe line from the Bloemendhal Oil Terminal to the Port of Colombo.
2013 - Vision 2020 - The corporate plan of Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) was  launched.
2013 - Ceremonial Inauguration of the Colombo Port Expansion Project with a monumental breakwater of 6.8 k.m. and the 1st Terminal - (Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT)).
2013 - Ceremonial Inauguration of Port of Oluvil.
2013 - Implementation of Import FCL Module of Cargo Management System.
2013 - Ceremonial Inauguration of Administration Building at MRMR Port.
2014 - Colombo International Container Terminal (CICT)fully operational in April.
2014 - CImplementation of Vessel Traffic Management System (VTMS in May.
2014 - Ceremonial Inauguration of Tank Farm Complex and Bunkering Terminal at Magam Ruhunupura Mahinda Rajapaksa Port - 22.06.2014
2014 - Ceremonial Inauguration of Administration Building at MRMR Port.
2014 - Opening of New Fire Brigade Building - 01.08.2014 - Port of Colombo.
2014 - Arrival of 02 Gantry Cranes and 02 Tugs at MRMR Port.
2014 - Inauguration of the Colombo Port City development project - 17.09.2014
2016 - Opening of New CFS 1 Building - 10.08.2016 - Port of Colombo.
2016 - Launched SLPA new Web site - 10.08.2016


Ports managed by SLPA

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