Hambantota, town, Southern prov., Sri Lanka, on the S coast 65 mi (105 km) E of Galle. The town is located in an area of salt production, which utilizes natural depressions called lewayas. Hambantota suffered significant damage from the Dec., 2004, Indian Ocean tsunami. A new deep seaport, constructed in phases, opened here in 2010; it was a major infrastructure project undertaken as part of a rebuilding effort after the end of the civil war. An international airport also is there. In 2017 Sri Lanka leased the port for 99 years to a Chinese-government-owned company, in part to help pay down debt owed to Chinese-government-owned companies.
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