Tough time ahead with electricity and fuel price hikes – Ranil

Ranil Wickremesinghe

Sri Lanka’s economy is heading for a tough time in the coming months with power tariff and fuel price hikes as a result of increasing losses of the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC), former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said yesterday (April 28).

“According to the Minister’s speech in Parliament last week, the losses of CEB in 2021 was Rs. 79 billion. Some say the losses are higher, projected this year is Rs. 100 billion. The tariff for one unit is Rs. 17, but the expenditure is Rs. 5. The loss of CPC for 2021 was Rs. 83 billion. The daily loss of CPC is Rs. 327 million. CPC losses are expected to be $ 80 million in a few months time. Losses incur further because of the rupee devaluation.

“These two institutions are in debt to both People’s Bank and Bank of Ceylon. These banks have to carry the burden of Srilankan Airlines as well. These two banks have been affected with the stoppage of International Sovereign Bonds. In addition, NSB is also affected. The total amount due to the state banks is Rupees one trillion.

“Power tariff hike and fuel price hike to reduce the losses. Are we going to untie the knot or cut it? It will take time. The people in this country have to bear this burden till the mechanism of borrowing is in place,” Mr. Wickremesinghe said.

(Source: Daily Mirror – By Yohan Perera)