Sri Lanka’s CEB getting fuel; power cuts stopped for now: report
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s state-run Ceylon Electricity Board has stopped power cuts after Ceylon Petroleum Corporation resumed fuel supplies which were cut off Monday after arrears of 80 billion rupees were racked up, a media report said.
"The fuel supply is back, but it is not clear at the moment what the solution will be," Power Ministry spokesman Sulakshana Jayawardene was quoted as saying by RepublicNext, an affiliated news portal. (Read this link for updates)
On Monday sudden power cuts were reported from several areas.
Sri Lanka’s energy utilities have seen a sharp rise in costs after the central bank busted the rupee from 153 at the begging of 2018 to 176 to the US dollar now.
Analysts have called for reform of the central bank and criminal penalties for specific reckless actions of the domestic operations department of the agency to put an end to 68 years of monetary instability that began with the abolishing of a currency board.
In the four months to April the CEB racked up losses of 23 billion rupees.
Jayawardene said a subsidy should come from the Treasury or the arrears limit has to be raised.
CPC’s bank borrowings shot up in 2018 partly due to the currency collapse.
CEB’s losses are expected to be covered by tax payer subsidies from the Treasury. There were expectations when the Public Utilities Commission was set up, that cost recovery tariffs would come like in the telecom sector in the 1900s, but no such outcome has been seen. (Colombo/July09/2019)
Jehan Perera - Executive Director National Peace Council