30th March 2013, www.island.lk, By Steve A Morrell
Colombo Dockyard provides a unique platform to display Sri Lanka to the world stage, says Mangala Yapa, the company’s MD/CEO.
From small beginnings in 1974, Colombo Dockyard has grown in stature and prominence to make a significant contribution to the national economy, he said at the company’s 20th anniversary celebrations.
"Our contribution is such that we earn foreign exchange in ship building and sea craft. We accept ship building orders from overseas. All this means we earn foreign exchange for the Sri Lankan government", he said.
The chief guest was Minister of Economic Development, Basil Rajapaksa.
Yapa said that since 1974, about 40 years ago, when the company was formed, their decision to forge a partnership with Onomichi Dockyard Company Limited of Japan on or about 1993 augured well. Onomichi’s decision was momentous because it came at a time the Colombo Dockyard was exploring stability and structure.
He said their inspired leadership brought about the stability that was needed to ensure positive progress and put in place abiding Japanese standards that have proved to an invaluable asset to the progress of the company.
"We did not seek publicity for the work we did. But, this year, it is 20 years since our joint collaboration with Onomichi, the occasion is right to project ourselves in a more public stance", the MD/CEO said.
"Our forte has always been ship building and ship repair services. We are proud to have nurtured this special trait from its infancy", Yapa stressed.
Akihiko Nakauchi, Chairman, Onomichi Dockyard Japan, recalled that it was a tactical move on the part of the Japanese in 1993 and it was a defining moment that Colombo Dockyard and Onomichi Dockyard collaborated to form the company. More so, that both countries had special friendly ties that further cemented this partnership.
"In the recent past, we have been successful in carving out certain niche markets. Our expertise is sought after across the globe particularly in the manufacture of sophisticated Off Shore Vessels.’, Nakauchi said.
Special mention was made of the first Managing Director, Ragunathan, who took office in 1974 and also A. K. Diyabalanage, Lal Dassanayake and Valentine Silva, who had contributed significantly to the progress of the Colombo Dockyard.
Yapa further said "My vision for the future would be a corporate value culture of this nature and to propel Colombo Dockyard to the pinnacle of global marine services".
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