Rs 3.165 bn grant for healthcare, rural development

The Japanese government granted 3.103 billion Yen (approximately Rs 3.165 billion) to improve facilities at the Anuradhapura Teaching Hospital (ATH) and to help the government of Sri Lanka initiate sustainable development programmes, the Ministry of Finance and Planning announced.

This grant which comes from the Grant Aid Programme of the Japanese Government will provide 1.8 billion Yen to the ATH to construct a new building with a floor area of 7,500 square meters to house the Obstetric Gynaecology Theatre, Paediatric Unit and Outdoor Patients Department.

These units will also be provided with the necessary equipment. The ATH caters to over 1.3 million people living in the Anuradhapura district. The hospital also attracts patients from the neighbouring districts of Vavuniya, Mannar, Trincomalee and Puttalam as healthcare facilities are insufficient in these districts, the Finance Ministry said.

The project will be implemented by the Ministry of Healthcare and Nutrition and is expected to be completed by 2010. The Japanese government had already provided 104 million Yen early this year for the building’s design, which is to be completed by July.

The balance 1.3 billion Yen will be used to import goods and materials that the government will require to implement development projects.

"Part of the value of the goods imported under this grant will be deposited as counterpart funds in a special account and will be utilised to finance small scale development projects in lagging regions, including the Eastern region," a Finance Ministry release said. (DD)

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