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Press Releases
2009-02-03: [source:The Island] Deyata Kirula Exhibition tomorrow
2008-07-24: [source:Daily News] SAARC Summit a platform to promote tourism
2003-04-20: [source:Observer] Sirimavo Bandaranaika Memorial Exhibition & Convention centre - Official Opening on May 17
1999-05-22: [source:Daily News] Tree Planting Campaign at BMICH
1999-05-07: [source:Daily News] BMICH to get exhibition hall and international study centre
1999-05-07: International Exhibition Centre at BMICH
1999-05-01: [source:Lake House] BMICH’s enhanced majesty
1998-05-10: [source:Lake House] Another outright gift from Chinese Govt - Modern convention hall next door to BMICH
1998-05-09: [source:Weekend Express] B.M.I.C.H. – 25th anniversary
1983-05-21: [source:SUN] Tenth Anniversary of BMICH
view all
23/11/1970: Largest conference hall in the East
CEYLON was badly on need of rice, her staple food, and a reasonable price for her rubber. It was the people of China who helped us in our hour of need.

That was in 1952.We could venture deeper into History and trace many more instances of cordial relations between our two countries: but, I think this most recent friendship cultivated on the basis of the bi-lateral trade agreement is the one closest to our hearts.

In the contexts of these events the Rs. 3.5 million Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference hall which the people of China have gifted to us is more than a memorial to a honored hero: it could well be considered a tribute to a friendly people.
Today the Hon. Mrs. Sirimavo R.D Bandaranaike inaugurated the construction work of the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall. When completed it would be the largest International Conference Hall cum National Theatre in the East.

A team of architects, and engineers from China have been working round the clock for the past few months to finalize details of constructional work.

The idea of a Conference Hall in memory of the late Mr. S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike was first mooted ten years ago and in August 1960 a cabinet sub – committee was set up to consider the feasibility of the scheme.

THE SITE , the Havelock Golf Links is 37 acres in extent with approaches from the South, East, and west along Bauddhaloka Mawata. and Longden Place from the North along McCarthy Road.

In 1963 officials of the Department of Public Works visited various international Conference Halls and planned a conference hall for 40 delegates. This was altered in 1964 and it was decided to provide accommodation for 90 delegations.

Under the Agreement for economic and technical cooperation between the Government of ceylo9n and the Government of People’s Republic of China, the Government of the people’s republic of China agreed to give the Government of Ceylon a sum of Rs. 50 million as a free grant of economics and financial aid, without ant additions attached. Out of this sum Rs.3o million approximately is being reserved for the construction of the Bandaranaike Memorial international conference Hall, which will be the largest conference hall in the East for holding International Conferences.

In 1964 an American architect Abel Borensen,was commissioned by the Government to report to UN architecture requirements, and he submitted a full report on which the design work was done in 1966 by a joint team of Chinese and Ceylonese Architects and Engineers.

Under the previous Government, proposals were made for the modification of the original project by a reduction in the size of the Conference Hall to the original dimensions and by the addition of a hotel project for accommodation of the delegates.

After the victory of the ULF Government, the Cabinet decided that the Conference Hall should be built as originally proposed by the Government of the peoples Republic of China to accommodate full International Conferences comprising 90 delegations of 6 delegates each, and that the hotel project should be undertaken dependent on the availability of funds.

Negotiations were undertaken on this aspect with the Government of the People’s republic of China.

It is also proposed that a National Theatre should form part of the project. It would be integrated with the main Conference hall.

Further negotiations were undertaken with the Government of the peoples Republic of China and it was decided to include a national Theatre as an integral part of the Main Conference Hall.

The main Conference Hall, will consist of a main assembly hall and some additional rooms to serve the hall such as the approach hall, dining hall and lounges. The main assembly hall will have 1500 seats of which 540 are for delegates. Seating accommodation will also be provided for about 110 observers and the press.

Another feature of the main assembly hall will be the stage for cultural performances. An automatic selector will be installed for simultaneous interpretations in seven languages for each seat besides a microphone for the head of each of delegations and earphones for listening in every member of a delegation and all other seats in the main hall including observers, press VIP and public.

Facilities of reinforcements and lightening installation for shooting news reels and television rooms for rebroadcasting and sound recording will also be provided.

The delegation Blocks would contain offices for delegations while the Committee Block consists of six conference rooms, two with 438 seats, two with 50 seats and two with 30 seats.

Facilities for simultaneous interpretations in seven languages, sound reinforcement, and lightening installations for shooting newsreels will be included.

The secretariat block would contain offices of the Secretariat and other offices as well as a cafeteria.

Eight hundred automatic telephones and 13 overseas telephones would be installed. 14 pairs of special telecommunications lines will connect the conference hall with C.B.C. for rebroadcasting.

There would also be an Information centre for conference, Travel Tourist services, A Post Office, banking and Exchange facilities. Local Handicrafts shop and a delegates lounge and cafeteria will also be among the other facilities.

Local Sinhalese architectural features will be stressed on certain parts of the building would be decorated with mural paintings and relief sculpture symbolizing the national culture and traditional art and crafts of Ceylon.

The main entrance of the assembly Hall will be done by specially selected Chinese artists and craftsmen.

[source:Daily News]