South Asia and Beyond

‘Lengthy Power Cuts Await Sri Lanka Next Year’

 ‘Lengthy Power Cuts Await Sri Lanka Next Year’

Sri Lanka may be in for lengthy power cuts next year even if power tariff is raised as there’s insufficient coal for electricity generation, Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers’ Union President Nihal Weeraratne has claimed. “We can’t supply electricity just because of a tariff hike, unless the required amount of coal is provided. Tariff is being increased so that the CEB can be privatised, because anyone buying this over will not buy it at such a low cost. Money received from selling the CEB is not going to work generators, as generators need coal,” he said, warning that Sri Lanka might have to face a “black and dark March” in 2023 similar to the “black and dark July”, as the required amount of coal needed for Lakvijaya Power Plant in Norochcholai, which supplies electricity to 45 per cent of the population, has not been supplied yet. President Ranil Wickremesinghe told Parliament last week that the electricity board had incurred losses of around Rs 300 billion since 2013. If Sri Lanka faces a drought next year as predicted, an additional Rs 420 billion would be required, he added. The CEB’s Board of Directors and trade unions have said they would forgo their bonuses for this year.


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