Raja Edirisuriya has assumed duties as the Executive Project Management Director for Colombo Port City Development Project.
This appointment was made as per a cabinet decision on a paper submitted by Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa as the Minister of Urban Development & Housing. Prior to this appointment, Edirisuriya was serving as the Chairman of the Urban Settlement Development Authority (USDA).
A celebrated civil engineer by profession, Edirisuriya obtained his Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering, specialising in structural engineering from Rutgers University New Jersey, USA. He also went on to acquire his Masters in public administration at University of La Verne, California. As a professionally registered civil engineer in California, he has held the prestigious position of Administrator and City Engineer for almost 16 years with the city of Chino, California.
In early 2006, Edirisuriya was appointed as the chairman of the then ailing construction giant, Sri Lanka State Engineering Corporation (SEC). With his sheer dedication and commitment, along with the supporting staff, this organisation was resurrected within a short period of 9 months. Under Edirisuriya’s chairmanship, the corporation turned a profit of Rs. 103 million at the end of the 2006 financial year. This was the first time that SEC turned a profit since 1981.
In December 2009, on a request made by the then President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Edirisuriya accepted the Chairmanship of Mihin Lanka Airlines in order to resume the company’s operations after it had been grounded for some time.
Edirisuriya has also served as the Sri Lankan Ambassador to Brazil, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Surinam, further affirming his stature as a global citizen. During his tenure from 2013 to 2015, he promoted trade and tourism between Latin America and Sri Lanka and also helped facilitate United Nations Humans Rights resolutions among Brazil, Chile and Argentina to support the Sri Lankan government. Additionally, Edirisuriya was instrumental in acquiring a property on behalf of the Sri Lankan Government in Brasilia, Brazil to house the Sri Lankan Embassy.
A philanthropist by nature, he gathered support and funds from the Sri Lankan community in Los Angeles to help construct 39 homes for Tsunami victims in Induruwa. When Edirisuriya was the Vice-President of Ranaviru Foundation USA in 2008, he helped raise Rs. 12 million for disabled Sri Lankan soldiers during the peak of the war. The money was used to build houses for veteran soldiers and their families in Anuradhapura.
Throughout his professional career, Edirisuriya has always been a devoted public servant for his motherland Sri Lanka. This is especially apparent when analysing his professional roles; they have all resulted in the prosperity of Sri Lanka and its people. In his new role as the Executive Project Management Director for Colombo Port City Development Project, it is expected that Edirisuriya will deliver results with the benefit of the nation in mind.
The Colombo Port City Development Project is recently being gazetted as a National Prioritised Project, directly supervised by the Presidential Secretariat with other relevant Ministries. Having completed the initial development stage of reclamation and breakwater construction, Port City is currently at the infrastructure development stage 1, which covers the internal roads and utility connections construction
The Special Economic Zone (SEZ) act, which is the much anticipated regulatory framework for Port City, is expected to be enacted by the Parliament before the end of this year.