The Sri Lankan Government says it is considering holding a referendum to endorse its current peace process with Tamil rebels.
By Frances Harrison
BBC correspondent in Colombo
Cabinet spokesman, G L Peiris, said this would not diminish the need for a further referendum once a final political settlement had been agreed.
Fresh local elections were agreed at the last round of talks
Mr Peiris says what is being considered is a method of consulting the public about the procedures now being used to resolve Sri Lanka's ethnic conflict.
He says it would be a non-binding referendum which would endorse new legislation known as a Peace Bill before it became law.
But when it comes to the point of implementing a political settlement, Mr Peiris is quite clear there would have to be another referendum to bring about the necessary constitutional changes.
The government says the first referendum would be island-wide and would therefore require the participation of the rebels who control large parts of the north east.
Mr Peiris also says the government is preparing legislation to be brought before parliament next month, which would pave the way for holding fresh local government elections in the north-east of Sri Lanka.
This is something the Tigers agreed to at the last round of talks in Japan.
It would also cover issues relating to land boundaries and ownership now that hundreds of thousands of refugees are returning home because of the peace process.
Looking ahead to the international donors' conference in Japan in June, Mr Peiris said he still expected the response to be "magnificent", as he put it.
This is despite widespread fears that the war in Iraq will divert resources and attention from Sri Lanka's reconstruction needs.