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The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) has signed ODA loan agreements totalling ¥11.284bn with the government of Sri Lanka to finance the rehabilitation of power transmissions lines and the reconstruction of areas affected by the tsunami last December.

Since an indefinite ceasefire agreement in February 2002 between the government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam brought the 20-year civil conflict to an end, reconstruction initiatives have been underway.

To support the peace building efforts, JBIC provided ODA loans last December for three projects, including small-scale infrastructure rehabilitation. The recently signed ODA loan will rehabilitate the transmission lines between Vavuniya and Kilinochchi in northern Sri Lanka, where only 22% of households have access to electricity.

In addition, a substation in Kilinochchi will be reconstructed, thereby helping to achieve a stable power supply.

In January, JBIC, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank conducted a joint study to gauge the extent of the damage caused by the tsunami and the needs for disaster recovery assistance. This loan agreement aims to contribute to improving the living conditions of the people affected by the tsunami and to rebuilding the regional economy by supporting the rehabilitation of roads, water and power supply, irrigation mail service. In addition, a small business revival programme will support capital investment and other financial needs of the tsunami-afflicted private sector, such as small enterprises in the fishery and tourism industries.