[ECONOMYNEXT] Sri Lanka imposes power cuts after delaying thermal plant

 Sri Lanka has started cutting power after failing to award a contract to build a 300 MegaWatt power plant for over three years amid corruption allegations and also cancelling coal plant that was about to be built, making a reality of warnings given by analysts, engineers at the state-run power utility and industry analysts.

State-run Ceylon Electricity Board said up to four hours of power cuts will be imposed on consumers in all parts of the island with one hour in the day time and the rest in the day time. (link to load shedding times)

Three years ago CEB’s engineers union, industry analysts and the power regulator had warned that power cuts were likely in 2018 as the government failed to award a 300 MW thermal power plant to a private firm which was to tide over the country until the coal plant came on line.

But there were no power cuts in 2018 amid better rainfall and slower demand growth.

“We can expect a government announcement by 2018, when indications of the crisis become apparent – typically (during the hot months from) February to April,” power sector analysts Tilka Siyambalapitiya said in 2016 shortly after President Maithripala Sirisena cancelled a coal power plant which was about to be built. (Sri Lanka faces power shortage with coal plant delay)

“The government will say ‘we will pay the bill for diesel and customers would not be burdened’. There will be load shedding (power cuts).”

The government also failed to award a stop gap 300 MegaWatt thermal plant for around three years amid allegations of corruption.

CEB’s engineers union had also warned that the scrapping of the coal plant will push up power costs and if the tariffs are not raised taxes charged from other goods will be used to cover losses in power.

“If the CEB makes losses, the costs will eventually have to be recovered from the public with taxes on food or value added tax,” (Sri Lanka consumers warned on impending ‘electric shock’ after coal plant scrapping).

then CEB engineers union chief Athula Wanniarachchi said.

In 2018 the CEB lost 25 billion rupees and losses could worsen in 2019.

The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka has also given similar warnings.

“PUCSL envisages an energy shortage in years 2018/ 2019 unless the plants identified in the approved plan relevant to the period are implemented on time, the regulator said in 2016. (Sri Lanka regulator stresses urgency of new power plants to ward off shortage.)

“The real challenge is to get these plants implemented,” PUCSL director general Damitha Director General Damitha Kumarasinghe told a news conference in 2016.  

“We have only one and a half to two years. We’re looking at very quick implementation.”

There was also a tug-o-war between the regulator and the CEB after amid allegations that data in a power plan was mis-represented to show that long term costs of coal was higher than liquefied natural gas.

The regulator is to take legal action against the CEB for cuting power secretly without getting permission from the regulator, Sri Lanka’s Daily FT newspaper reported.

In Sri Lanka power supply is a state monopoly and the people themselves cannot set up a power plant and even sell to a neighbor, which generates shortages. 

Power cuts are commonplace all over South Asia except in Mumbai, India where electricity is provided by Tata, a private firm, which escaped expropriation by then Prime Minister Nehru.  (Colombo/Mar26/2019)

The regulator is to take legal action against the CEB for cuting power secretly without getting permission from the regulator, Sri Lanka’s Daily FT newspaper reported.

In Sri Lanka power supply is a state monopoly and the people themselves cannot set up a power plant and even sell to a neighbor, which generates shortages. 

Power cuts are commonplace all over South Asia except in Mumbai, India where electricity is provided by Tata, a private firm, which escaped expropriation by then Prime Minister Nehru.  (Colombo/Mar26/2019)


[The Island] Electricity generation moving as planned by saboteurs


BY Dr Tilak Siyambalapitiya

There is only one “decision” on which the current President and the Prime Minister agreed with each other wholeheartedly: that is to cancel the Sampur power plant, in 2016. It was a decision to kill, and not to develop, the electricity sector. Even a decision to kill a project would have been compensated, at least partially, if the duo swiftly commenced a systematic approach to build a gas import terminal and gas-fired power plant, but that was not to be.

On 15th May 2016, a state-owned newspaper “proudly” announced: “Sampur shelved: Coal plant off the table” and continued to say, “The CEM has arrived at several decisions which include negotiating the need for a coal power plant (sic) and replacing it with a cleaner model like LNG”. “They have also decided to suspend all activities including tenders that have already been called.”

Given the several technical inaccuracies in the above statement, it could not have been drafted by a person with any knowledge of engineering, but by a politician, but it achieved its objective. The Deputy Minister of Power, who only a few months ago had been specially assigned through a special gazette notification, the task of getting the Sampur power plant project going, was in tears, as he later said.

The aforesaid statement would have brought immense joy to many: (a) the decision-makers of Cabinet Committee on Economic Management (CEM), (b) the anti-coal lobby, (c) contractors-in-waiting, to supply diesel power plants.

The confused public who do not know the actual motive of the cancellation would also have been pleased since the only coal-fired power plant in the country was undergoing numerous outages, generating bad publicity. So why have another one, the common man may argue, happy that another one will not be built. Moreover, residents of Sampur would have rejoiced that the environment had been saved. The President and the Prime Minister seem to know a lot more than engineers, economists and scientists, to have special meetings and decide themselves, about power plants. Just imagine how concerned they are about the country, her people and the electricity supply!

We have seen and heard similar statements, precisely when the same individuals were at the helm, not at the Power Ministry but on various dubious “committees” of the government:

1992: “HE the President advised me to instruct CEB to refrain from proceeding with the Mawella coal-fired power plant”, said the Secretary to the President, in a letter to CEB. A committee called the “Power Committee” was sitting at that time, chaired by the Secretary to the Treasury. So, the President decides, not the engineers.

2002: “The Prime Minister called the Japanese Ambassador to his residence and said that the CEB has misled both the previous government and the present government. The Prime Minister has informed the Japanese Ambassador that the government has decided to cancel the Norochcholai coal power plant.” This time the committee behind it was called the “Energy Supply Committee”. So the PM decides, not the engineers.

2016: Precisely by the same individuals as in 1992 and 2002 who sat in various dubious committees outside the Ministry of Power and Energy, dictate to the Ministry on how to run the electricity supply system. And each time they failed the country miserably. This time the committee was called the “Cabinet Committee on Economic Management”.

So, after the decision, in 2016, which brought tears to the Deputy Minister of Power, following the “tradition”, the Prime Minister appointed yet another a “committee” and all its members, except one, had no experience, at all, in the subject of electrical power systems, and the committee report came out precisely as expected “build gas power plants; bury Sampur”. What else can you expect of a committee appointed after the decision is made?

Although the “bond committee” report was challenged, this committee’s recommendations went unchallenged. With little knowledge of the media on matters that are electric, the committee report was not even published widely.

To add insult to injury, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Management has since been abolished by the President. Now there is another committee: “National Economic Council”. So now, who is responsible for the mess created by CEM in the power sector?

Who killed the power sector?

So, who killed the electricity supply industry? The President says that he did not. The CEM or the inner Cabinet or what remains of it says it does not exist; the Ministry of Energy says CEM did it, the CEB says we did not do it. The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) says that the killing power plants was “government policy” but the President says he did not say so, and it was “not government policy”.

So, the electricity generation is moving in the direction the saboteurs wanted it to. The retired oil power plants are been reived; companies are writing reports on how one oil power plant is more expensive than the other; the PUCSL is not approving contracts as regards oil power plants; there are accusations and counter accusations against oil power plants; in the end,

it is oil and more oil; more oil power plants have to be purchased on an emergency basis to avoid continuing blackouts in view of elections to be held towards the year end; such emergency procurements will be approved by Cabinet and the PUCSL instantly, without batting an eye lid.

Mark my word; there will be a lot of “emergency power” in 2019 and in 2020.

Procuring emergency power is also very good—not for the electricity customer or the taxpayer but the decision-maker.

Are we really building a gas terminal?

Natural gas prices declined since 2013. A feasibility study was concluded, in 2014, and gas power plants entered the planning cycle and subsequently the national long-term generation plan in 2017. The government began “negotiating” with various parties to build gas terminals and gas power plants whereas the Electricity Act says power generation has to be procured on a competitive basis. News items such as the following appeared during the 2015-2018 period:

BOI Chairman: “We have received six proposals for gas terminals and negotiating with all of them”.

CEM: We are negotiating to form a joint venture between India, Japan and Sri Lanka.

President: I have received a proposal from a Korean Company to build a gas terminal; here it is. It will be a take-or-pay contract.

China: We will build a gas terminal in Hambantota

So, the number of gas terminals being contemplated by various arms and individuals of the government is nine, but none has reached the construction phase. All proposals and their hidden sponsors within various government committees try to evade the competitive bidding process. The spoils too attractive to shared. So, bury the National Procurement Commission, procurement policies and the Electricity Act!

The large Indian market so far has only four gas terminals; three of them hardly used, owing to the higher costs of gas compared with coal and renewables. Politicians at all levels in tiny Sri Lanka are toying with nine gas terminal proposals! This game will become more aggressive in the run-up to elections, for obvious reasons.

All these games are played while the country is paying for oil to run power plants. More are on the way. The share of electricity produced from oil reached a 20-year low of 18%, in 2015, and now it has risen back to 34% by 2017, and will surely exceed 50% by 2020.

In 2020, the Central Bank will write in its annual report: “Bad weather has caused more oil to be used for power generation!” Will they dare say “the cancellation of Sampur and not building a gas terminal was the reason”?

Kill an ongoing project, then call friends and ask for proposals for gas plants and confuse all the dubious proponents by accepting all nine proposals whereas the need is for just one. All this, they do, knowing very well that procurement has to be through competitive bidding, as stated in the law.

Since the planned power plants are not allowed to be constructed with government’s meddling with the next best solution to build a gas import terminal, by year 2020, the additional oil consumption for power generation would be, at least, 400 million litres. At today’s costs, it will be at least Rs 32,000 million. This cost will be passed on to electricity customers, not only in 2020, but year after year.

Did someone say the Central Bank bond issue (the scam) was the biggest financial irregularity in the country’s history? Isn’t Rs 32,000 million lost to the country year after year bigger than Rs 11,000 million, which is said to be the loss due bond scams?

When will a Presidential commission to probe meddling with power plant projects be appointed? The Commission can begin work with the 15th May 2016 decision of the CEM, as the first piece of evidence.

Swiss Challenge

Numerous newspaper articles claimed that the real reasons for the October 26th fallout between the two individuals sharing power was the gas terminal contract. Since we are not privy to what goes on in the inner rooms of the Presidential Secretariat or the Temple Trees, it is hard to say yes or no. However, within days of the October 26th fallout, an official newspaper advertisements appeared requesting alternative proposals for the gas terminal, to be submitted within five weeks. The advertisements, obviously published by the arm of government that remained in power, tell us all about it.

The advertisements literally said that we (meaning the surviving arm of the government) had got a proposal for an LNG terminal, and anyone could match that could send counter proposals within five weeks. The terminal is at least a 300-million-dollar investment; and what is more; against all advice and protests from almost all who know the energy industry, the President was asking for proposals to match the take-or-pay contract offered to him by a Korean Company. The total value of the contract would have been 5,000-million-dollars, if the deal went through, when there was no government!

Surely, no company of repute would even attempt to send a counter proposal to finance and build a 300-million-dollar asset in five weeks! Even a building contractor takes two weeks to send his pricing to build a 10-million-rupee house! Here, we have a government which has received a proposal from an interested party, which was not solicited (meaning there was no tender process in the first place) now trying to rush the proposal through by inviting counter proposals in five weeks so that there will be no counter proposals. Respectable companies with worldwide experience in building gas terminals must be laughing at the Sri Lankan way of handling multi-million dollar projects.

And the end result? There will be no gas terminal, someone in the Cabinet will shoot it down, because the procedures were not followed.

So, that’s how our President and Prime Minister agreed on the cancellation of the Sampur power plant and disagreed on the gas terminal. The government will go down in the history as the administration that cancelled all power plants and did not build a single power one.

In fact, it is not the government that decides which power plants to build and where. Such decisions in other countries are made by technocrats. The government ensures that laws are made and adhered to. Here, such decisions are made by all-knowing politicians, and the result is obvious.

The on-going blackouts are only the beginning. The power generating system is planned to meet customer demand even when hydropower is low and when a large generator is out of order. But when politicians do not allow the construction of new power plants, and tinker with plans and projects, then crises are to be expected when the rainfall gets low and a power plant goes out of order.

Then, the weather or the power plant can be blamed for the blackouts!

The game (of meddling with power plant projects) is the same, and this time around, the players are the same as in 1992, 1997, 2002, and the result: more blackouts, higher costs and a nation eternally in a power crisis!


[REUTERS] Sri Lanka’s drought, failure to raise power capacity force nationwide power cuts

COLOMBO (Reuters) – Sri Lanka’s state-run power firm has imposed daily power cuts for the first time in more than two years as a drought has slashed hydro-power output, highlighting the government’s failure to build new power plants, officials said on Monday.

The drought has cut the hydro-power generation in half to 15 percent of the nation’s total electricity production as the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) seeks to save water for household and irrigation requirements, the firm said.

That has resulted in a four-hour rolling power cut on weekdays, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 10 p.m. (0300-1630 GMT), that began without notice on Friday and was then announced on a scheduled basis for Monday. The four-hour daily cuts hit different places at different times.

If the power cuts are extended for any length of time they could hurt Sri Lanka’s already weak economy. Its GDP growth slowed to just 3.2 percent in 2018, the lowest in 17 years.

Sri Lanka’s peak demand is 2,400 MW and the country is generating 1,950 MW at the moment, CEB officials said.

“We have to impose power cuts to bridge the shortage,” Saumya Kumarawadu, head of the CEB Engineers Union, told Reuters. “The main reason for the power cut is the government’s failure in implementing the planned power plants,” he added.

Officials from the Power and Energy Ministry were not immediately available for comment on the power cuts.

Health Ministry officials said key hospitals in the country had emergency power backup.

In an indication of how severe the situation has become, a Power and Energy Ministry official said the government had on Friday started trying to produce artificial rain with the help of Thailand’s Department of Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation – so far only a pilot project.

The power cuts come after delays in power plant projects.

In 2016, the government canceled a 500 MW coal power plant through a joint venture between CEB and India’s National Thermal Power Corporation in the eastern port district of Trincomalee, citing environmental pollution. That coal power plant was originally due to start producing later this year.

A 300 MW liquefied natural gas plant (LNG), which was to be started in January this year, has been held up for more than two years due to a court battle between local firm Lakdhanavi and a joint venture between China’s GCL and a Sri Lankan firm.

Lakdhanavi had filed a legal case against the Power and Energy Ministry in 2017 for awarding the LNG tender to the joint venture for $307 million against its bid of $175 million.

Sri Lanka has total electricity generating capacity of 40 GWH, as it mainly relies on thermal power, including a Chinese built coal power plant, which account for 45 percent of its supply.

Additional reporting by Ranga Sirilal; Edited by Martin Howell and Alison Williams

[SUNDAY TIMES] Festering power struggles bubble over, again

Despite strong assurances from the Power and Energy Ministry that power cuts imposed due to the sudden breakdown of the Norochcholai coal power plant on Monday, people are left without electricity for three to four hours at times.

Households and business large and small, are all counting the cost of power cuts and failures.

The power interruptions in turn have raised questions about future supplies and whether the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) can ensure uninterrupted power with only three more weeks left for the Sinhala and Tamil New Year.

The Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers Union President, Saumaya Kumarawadu, told the Sunday Times that the board faces a shortage of 300 Megawatts of some 2,600MW needed every day, thereby triggering power failures.

The problem has been building up over the years due to the failure of authorities to implement at least five key proposed power projects due to a variety of reasons.

According to the engineers union, since the completion of the final stage of Norochcholai power plant in 2014, not a single power station was built to meet the increasing electricity needs in the country, leading to the current crisis.

The union claims the projects were “stopped or purposely delayed” by organised groups with vested interests eager to promote projects beneficial to them.

They blamed politicians, senior officials in the ministry as well as members and officials in the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL).

A long-lerm, least cost electricity generation plan prepared by planning engineers in CEB was finally approved by PUCSL in 2018 amid severe pressure by the Engineers Union.

The engineers raised issues about the transparency of the proposed LNG projects.

The proposed Sampur power station with a capacity of 500MW was the next biggest power station to be built after Norochcholai and due to be completed by next year, but the project was held back due to a range of reasons.

Earlier, a long-term power generation plan prepared by the CEB up to 2034 was sent to the PUCSL in 2016, but was delayed for more than a year and approved only with fewer power stations.

Another proposal to add 230MW of LNG power to the national grid by this year has run into controversy with seven companies placing bids for the tender and authorities attempting to favour one bid from a South Korean company. The CEB Engineer’s Union objected to the move and eventually all bids were evaluated, but this has run into legal issues.

Meanwhile, the government is attempting to build three more LNG power stations through several companies from Japan, India and China, but the engineers union claims that there is neither any appropriate proposal nor any agreement on pricing to date.

Approval for another 100MW and 24×4 MW power stations which are to be fuelled by heavy furnace oil — proposed as medium-term solutions — has been further delayed with engineers refusing to sit on the technical evaluation committee.

The CEB Engineers Union claims that six months have passed after the draft tenders were submitted for ministry approval, but the secretary to the ministry is proposing alterations to technical specifications to appease a few individuals with business interests.

The union also claims that due to long delays in implementing low-cost coal and LNG power plants, several interim proposals were also made for a number of furnace oil-fuelled power plants as an alternative to the costly diesel powered plants, but the ministry had delayed approval for the bidding process.

They claim that delaying tactics of the ministry in granting approval for the bidding process to continue would eventually lead to a situation where emergency power purchases at exorbitant rates from the private sector is the only option left.

Cabinet approval was obtained for purchase 100MW of power from diesel generators during the first few weeks of February, but the plan did not materialise. Discussions on power purchases from Ace Matara and Asia Power which could yield 70MW has been suspended by the ministry, the unions claim.

The hydropower generation capacity, too, has been dropping due to the adverse weather. The capacity at Castlereigh and Maussakele Reservoirs have dwindled to 8% and 25%, respectively.

The capacities in reservoirs of the Mahaweli complex, including Kotmale, Victoria and Randenigala, are at a minimum. The remaining water in these reservoirs is needed for irrigation and the water released for hydro generation has been curtailed by the water management committee.

However, the Secretary to the Ministry of Power and Energy, Dr Suren Batagoda, told the Sunday Times that the crisis was not a result of the development over the past three to four years, but a long standing issue.

He said one of the reasons was that the engineers had declined to sit on technical evaluation committees resulting in the delay of project approvals.

“We have even asked the engineers to put forward the least cost of the supply of power so that we can ask bidders if they could provide power at those prices so that we can get the projects moving,’’ he said.

He said there are plans to award five LNG projects within the next month to ensure uninterrupted power. “We also will be awarding tenders for heavy furnace oil plants and also get the services of a barge from which 100 megawatts could be supplied.”

Dr Batagoda said disputes between the engineers and the PUCSL were also worsening the power crisis.

Power generators add to cost burden

The unannounced power cuts are also adversely affecting exporters including the tea and apparel industry.

“Tea Exporters are very concerned about the frequent power cuts and power interruptions,” Mr Jayantha Karunarathne, chairman of the Tea Exporters Association of Sri Lanka told the Sunday Times.

“To continue with our production to meet shipment deadlines we need to use generators. However, using generators is expensive [and] that could have an impact on our costs depending on the duration of power interruptions,” he explained.

“It is important that we resolve this issue without any further delay as continuous use of generators would lead to various other problems.”

“The apparel industry is very concerned about the power crisis and unannounced power cuts, we have strict time lines for deliveriesm,” Mr. MPT Cooray, the general secretary, Joint Apparel Association Forum of Sri Lanka, told the Sunday Times.

“Fake news on social media and communications platforms regarding pending power outages created disruptions and had compelled some companies to obtain back up power sources at significant cost,” said Rohan Masakorala, the chief executive officer, Shippers Academy Colombo. He is also chairman, Advisory Committee for Logistics.

Mr Masakorala pointed out that while the power disruptions haven’t had a significant impact on shipping yet, a prolonged power crisis and unannounced power cuts, may complicate matters.

He said the authorities need to be proactive to reduce the spread of fake news.


[The Island] Power cuts now inevitable due to govt dithering

By Rathindra Kuruwita

Power-cuts would have been inevitable even if the 2nd generator of the Norochcholai Coal Power Plant had not breakdown, yesterday, Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) sources said adding that the government had to decide whether it would purchase emergency power or continue with extended power-cuts.

He said: “Power-cuts were scheduled anyway because there wasn’t adequate generation. The matter was only compounded by the breakdown of the 2nd generator. Now the government has to decide whether to purchase emergency power, at high costs that would lead to further losses for CEB or to cut power on a daily basis. It’s a loss situation either way.”

Commenting on the issue, CEB Engineers’ Union President Saumya Kumarawadu said that they had been warning the government for years that the country would face a crisis in 2019 because major low cost power plants were not set up since 2014. “There were plans to add another 500 megawatts to the system by 2019 but none of those plants were built. Not only is the CEB making losses because of this, Rs. 80 billion last year, but will now greatly inconvenience the people,” he said.

Meanwhile the engineers attached to the Norochcholai Coal Power Plant were not able to identify where the fault lay even by 9 pm last night. Indrajith Gallage, assistant general manager, of the Power Plant told The Island that they were still conducting inspections to determine how long it would take them to fix the 2nd generator that had to be shut down due to a technical issue. “It’s an electrical issue, so we have to see where the fault lies. This is an exhaustive process,” he said.

Due to the shutdown, power outages were reported from a number of areas across the country. “We are looking at the matter and we should be able to tell how long it will take to restore it. Hopefully we should be able to get the plant running soon,” he said. The unit that was shut down generated 270 MWs to the national grid. Thus there might be restrictions on power supply until the unit was restored, CEB Spokesperson, Sulakshana Jayawardane said.

Meanwhile industry experts expressed surprise at the fact that there was a failure at the 2nd generator that was overhauled by a Chinese team last year. “The system was overhauled mid-2018. This means that there has been a breakdown within 7 months. This raises serious questions, did the Chinese team mess the overhaul or did our guys mess it up?” he said.

Usually Coal Power Plants need to be overhauled once in four years. The 2nd generator, which was brought online in 2014, was overhauled last year.


Lankadeepa: ලංවීම පාඩු ලැබුවත් විදුලි බිල වැඩි කරන්නෑ

(නිමල කොඩිතුවක්කු)

ලංකා විදුලි බල මණ්ඩලය මේ වසර සඳහා ඇස්තමේන්තුගත අලාභය රුපියල් කෝටි අටදහසක් බව විදුලිබල, බලශක්ති සහ ව්‍යාපාර සංවර්ධන අමාත්‍ය රවී කරුණානායක මහතා පැවැසීය.

එසේ වුවද විදුලි බිල වැඩි නොකරන බවත් අමාත්‍යවරයා සඳහන් කළේය.

තලංගම ලංකා විදුලි බල මණ්ඩලයේ  පාරිභෝගික සේවා මධ්‍යස්ථානය විවෘත කිරීමේ උත්සවයට අද (30) එක්වෙමින් ඔහු මේ බව පැවැසීය.

විදුලි බල මණ්ඩලය වාර්ෂික අලාභය මහවැලිය ඉදිකිරීමට යන වියදමට සමාන බවත් අමාත්‍යවරයා එහිදී සඳහන් කළේය.

ලංකා විදුලි බල මණ්ඩලය මෙතරම් පාඩු ලැබීමේ වගකීම දේශපාලඥයන් බාර ගත යුතු බවද ඔහු පැවැසීය.

කොතරම් පාඩු ලැබුවද ලංකා විදුලිබල මණ්ඩලය කිසිම දිනෙක පෞද්ගලීකරණය කිරීමට තමන් ඉඩ නොතබන බවත් කී අමාත්‍යවරයා නිවැරදි තීන්දු තීරණ මගින් එම ආයතනය ලාබ ලබන ස්ථානයක් බවට හැකි ඉක්මනින් පත් කරන බවද සඳහන් කළේය.

Daily FT: Power play

  • Ministry calls for tenders for emergency power sans PUCSL approval 
  • Emergency power wanted as experts predict low rainfall 
  • Expensive stopgap as Govt. has failed to implement power projects since 2015
  • Earlier plan of purchasing power from IPPs discarded but could be cheaper 

By Chathuri Dissanayake

As the Government has failed to implement any new power projects over the past three years, the Power and Energy Ministry has decided to purchase emergency powerin 2019 sans approval from the Public Utilities Commission Sri Lanka (PUCSL),as an expensive stopgap measure to offset predictions of low rainfall.

The Ministry has called for bids to purchase 100MW of emergency power, terming it as ‘supplementary power’, without obtaining prior approval from PUCSL, a requirement under Sri Lanka Electricity (Amendment) Act No. 31 of 2013, to meet the demand in coming months, following predictions of low rainfall in February and March.  The PUCSL is yet to receive any request from CEB to procure emergency power, Daily FT learnt.

“The rainfall is expected be low in the coming months and already our Hydropower is running at low capacity. We cannot meet the demand of 2500 MW of power with the existing capacity, so we have to go in for emergency purchases. There is a growing demand at a rate of 5%-6% a year and we have not added any new plants,” Ceylon Electricity Board spokesperson Sulakshana Jayawardena explained.

The situation has been worsened following the retirement of two Independent Power Producers (IPPs),24 MW Ace Power Plant Matara, and 51 MW Asia Power Plant, Jayawardena said.

Although approval from Cabinet was given to extend the agreements of three IPPs by another three years, the CEB, under pressure, shelved the decision for two.However, the CEB renewed the agreement with third IPP Ace Embilipitiya, which has a capacity of 100MW, till 2020, as it is crucial to provide uninterrupted power to the South.

However, the Ministry may commission the plants again if purchasing power is more cost effective than buying emergency power, Power and Energy Ministry Secretary Dr. B. M. S. Batagoda told Daily FT.

“The Ministry will compare the cheaper options after the bids for emergency power are evaluated. And if the IPPs that we had supplying electricity are cheaper, then we will negotiate with them,” he said.

According to him, these plants remain the cheapest at present, with capacity cost at Rs. 1.50 per unit for Ace Embilipitiya, Rs. 2.40 for Ace Power Plant Matara and Rs. 2.60 for the Asia Power Plant.

“Last year we floated a tender for emergency power, and it cost Rs. 28 per unit with a capacity cost of about Rs.3 per unit. The fuel costs would be almost the same. If we buy from a bigger plant then we will have to pay capacity cost of around Rs.4 for a unit to retain the plant.So it would be best to renew the agreements with the IPPs through negotiation if the new purchases are more expensive,” he explained.

The need for purchase of emergency power has increased as the CEB has failed to commission new power plants to cater to the growing demand. Despite Cabinet approval being given to call for bids for a number of projects, no new plant has been commissioned by the CEB. Among the projects to be commissioned are tenders for a 100 MW barge-mounted HFO power plant in Galle; 4x24MW Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) plants included in generation plans since 2015, which are yet to be tendered;and a 300MW LNG Plant has been tendered, but has run into controversy.

The CEB Engineers Union has maintained its opposition to emergency power purchases, as it is only a temporary measure and an expensive way to addressing shortages in capacity to meet demand.

“We are against temporary power purchases like this, as it is done at a very high price and this does not address issues of long-term generation capacity,” CEB Engineers’ Union President Saumya Kumarawadu told Daily FT.

LankaCNews: ලංවිම ණය කෝටි 40,000 පනී.. පාඩුව තවත් දෙතුන් ගුණයකින් වැඩිවෙන්න ලගයි..

අධි මිල හදිසි විදුලිය (Emergency Power) මක් නිසාද?

රටට සුදුසු දේ වෙනුවට පුද්ගලික වාසි ගෙනදෙන ව්‍යාපාර පසුපස යෑම

2014 වසරේදී නොරොච්චෝලේ අවසන් අදියර නිම වූ පසු මේ දක්වා රටේ වැඩිවන ව්දුලි බල ඉල්ලුම සඳහා විසඳුමක් වන කිසිඳු බලාගාරයක් ඉදි නොකිරීමත් ඉදිකිරීමට සූදානමින් තිබූ බලාගාර නවතා දැමීමත් නිසා මේ වනවිට විදුලිබල ක්ෂේත්ත්‍රය දැවැන්ත මූල්‍යමය අර්බුධයකට ඇදදමා ඇත. සැලසුම් සහගත කණ්ඩායම් විසින් ලං.වි.ම. සැලසුම් කරන ලද බලාගාර මෙලෙස නවතා දැමීමත් ප්‍රමාද කිරීමත් සිදුකරනු ලබන්නේ තමන්ට ආර්ථික වාසි ගෙනදෙන යෝජනා ක්‍රියාත්මක කිරීම සඳහාය. රටේ ප්‍රබල දේශපාලන බලවතුන්, අමාත්‍යංශයේ ඉහළ නිලධාරීන්, ස්වාධීනයයි කියාගන්නා උපයෝගීතා කොමිසමේ ඇතැම් සාමාජිකයින් හා නිලධාරීන් මෙම කණ්ඩායම් නියෝජනය කිරීම රටේ අභාග්‍ය බව කිවයුතුය.

වාසිය උදෙසා නීතිය කැඩීම

විදුලි බල පනත හා රටේ බලපවත්වන අනෙකුත් නීතීන් අනුව රටට අවශ්‍ය බලාගාර සෑදිය යුත්තේ අනුමත “ දීර්ග කාලීන අඩුවියදම් විදුලි ජනන සැලැස්ම” අනුව වෙයි. මෙම සැලැස්ම ලං.වි.ම. සැලසුම් ඉංජිනේරුවන් සකසන අතර එය නීතිගත වීමට මහජන උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම අනුමත කලයුතුය. තවද අප රටට ගැලපෙන ලෙස හදන අපේ සැලසුමේ තිබෙන බලාගාර සැදීම හැර වෙනත් රටකින් හෝ ව්‍යාපාරිකයෙකු යෝජනා කරන බලාගාර ඉදිකිරීම නීති පොත්වල නැත.

මෙම හේතුව නිසා රටේ ඉහලම පුටුවල සිටින දේශපාලන ප්‍රබලයන්ගේ සහාය හා මගපෙන්වීමද ඇතිව 2015 සිට නීති විරෝධී ලෙස අපසලසුම් අවුල් කිරීමටත් එහි ඇති බලාගාර නවතා දැමීමටත් ප්‍රමාද කිරීමටත් මෙම කණ්ඩායම් උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම යොදාගන්නාලදී. රටට හානිකර වුවද තමන්ට වාසි ගෙනෙන ව්‍යාපාර සිදුකිරීම සඳහා ක්ෂ්ත්‍රය නියාමනය කිරීමට සිටින කොමිසමක බලතල දූෂිත නිලධාරීන් හරහා භාවිතා කිරීම ජනතාවගේ ආරක්ෂාවට ගෙනා යුද්ධ ටැංකිය සතුරන් අතට පත්වීමට සමානය.

නොරෝච්ච්ලේට පසුව ඉදිකිරීමට තිබුණු දැවැන්තම බලාගාරය නැවත්වීම

නොරොච්චෝලේ බලාගාරයට පසුව ලං.වි,ම. සැලසුම්වලට අනුව ඉදිවීමට නියමිතව තිබුණු දැවැන්තම බලාගාරය 500MW සාම්පූර් බලාගාරයි. එය 2020 දී පමණ සදා නිමකිරීමට සියලු කටයුතු සුදානම්ව පැවතුනි. තමන්ට වාසි ගෙනෙන නීතිවිරෝධී බලාගාර ඉදිකිරීමට බලාපොරොත්තු ඇතිව මෙම කණ්ඩායම සැලසුම් සහගතව සම්පුර් බලාගාරය නවත්වයි. මෙය දැනට ජනාධිපති තුමා විසින් විසුරුවා ඇති CCEM එක, ජනාධිපති උපදේශක වරු, අප අමාත්‍යංශයේ ඉහලම නිලධාරීන් හා මහජන උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම රටේ සංවර්ධනයට අකුල්හෙළන රාජ්‍යනොවන සංවිධාන හා මොවුන්ට හිතවත් ව්‍යාපාරිකයින් එක්ව සිදුකරණ ලදී.

2034 දක්වා ලං.වි.ම. සැකසූ 20 අවුරුදු ජනන සැලැස්ම 2015 අගෝ. 06 දින උපයෝගීතා කොමිසමේ අනුමැතියට යැවුවද සැලැස්මෙන් සාම්පූර් ඉවත් කිරීමට අවස්තාව එනතෙක් වසරකට වැඩි කාලයක්  සැලැස්ම අනුමත නොකොට තබාගන්නා කොමිසම ඇතුළු කණ්ඩායම සාම්පූර් ඉවත්කිරීමෙන් පසු 2016 සැප්. 15  දින එම සැලසුමේ තිබුණු බලාගාර කිහිපයක් පමණක් අනුමත කර එවයි. එලෙස සැලැස්මේ  කොටසක් පමණක් අනුමත කිරීම පනත අනුව නීති විරෝධී බැවින් සාම්පුර් නැවත්වීමට අමතරව බලාගාර ඉදිකිරීමට ලං.වි.ම. ට නීතිමය සැලැස්මක් නොමැති වීමද දැවැන්ත ගැටළුවක් විය.

සාම්පුර් වැනි අඩුවියදම් බලාගාරයක් සැදීම වසර 5කින් ප්‍රමාද වීම නිසා රටට වන පාඩුව රුපියල් කෝටි 20,000 ක් (බිලියන 200ක්) පමණ වෙයි. බලාගාරය නවත්තල දැනට අවුරුදු 4 ක් ගතවෙලා ඒ පාඩුව නැතිකරන්න පුළුවන් බලාගාරයක් හදන්න තවම සුදානමක් වත් නෑ.

තරඟකාරී මිල ගණන් කැඳවූ 300MW ස්වභාවික වායු (LNG) බලාගාරය ප්‍රමාද ඇයි ?

අපේ සැලසු අනුව මේ බලාගාරය පද්දතියට එකතුවෙන්න තිබුනේ 2019 වර්ෂයේ. මේ සඳහා සමාගම් 7ක් මිලගනන් ඉදිරිපත් කලත් එක් කොරියන් සමාගමක ටෙන්ඩරය පමණක් විවෘත කිරීමට බලධාරීන් උත්සහ කිරීමේදී ඉංජිනේරු සංගමයද ඒ සඳහා විරුද්ධ වී සියලු ටෙන්ඩර් පත් විවෘත කර තරංගකාරී මිලක් ලබාගැනීමට හැකිවිය.  නමුත් විවිධ දේශපාලන බලවතුන්ගේ මැදිහත් වීම්, ටෙන්ඩර් මණ්ඩල වලට කරන ලද බලපෑම් හා අමාත්‍යංශයේ ඇතැම් ඉහල නිලධාරීන්ගේ අත්තනෝමතික ක්‍රියාවන් නිසා මෙම ටෙන්ඩරයේ තීරණය මේවනවිට උසාවියට භාරවී ඇත. මෙම ටෙන්ඩරය නිසා ටෙන්ඩර් මණ්ඩල වල නිලධාරීන් කිහිපවතාවක්ම වෙනස් වීම මේ සඳහා දේශපාලන බලවතුන්ගේ මැදිහත්වීම කෙතරම්ද යන්නට කදිම නිදසුනකි. මේ සඳහා මැදිහත්වී සුදුසු සමාගමක් මගින් රටට අවශ්‍ය මෙම දැවැන්ත බලාගාරය ඉදිකරවාගැනීම වෙනුවට තමන්ට වාසිගෙන එන කණ්ඩායම්වලට ටෙන්ඩරය ලබාදීමට බලධාරීන්ගේ හා දේශපාලන බලවතුන්ගේ කඹ ඇදීම මෙම තත්වයට හේතුවයි.

මේ අතර ජපානය, ඉන්දියාව හා චීනයේ සමාගම් තුනක් මගින් 500MW  බලාගාර 02ක් හා 400MW ක LNG බලාගාරයක් සැදීමට රජය උත්සහ කරයි.  නමුත් අප පද්ධතිය ඉතා කුඩා එකක් වන බැවින් 500MW විශාල ජනක යන්ත්‍ර පද්ධතියට එකතුකළ නොහැකි අතර පද්ධතියේ ස්ථායීතාව පවත්වාගෙන එකතුකළ හැකි තනි ජනක යන්ත්‍රයක උපරිම ධාරිතාවය 300MW කි.

මෙම බලාගාර ඉදිරි සැලසුම් වලට ඇතුලත් කිරීමට රජය යෝජනා කලද එමරටවල් වලින් ක්‍රමවත් යෝජනාවක් වත් විදුලිය ලබාදෙන මිල පිළිබඳව කිසිඳු එකඟතාවයක් මේ වනතෙක් ලබාදී නොමැත. තරඟකාරීව මිල කඳවු බලාගාර අනවශ්‍ය ලෙස වසර ගණන් පමා කිරීමට තවත් එක් හේතුවක් ලෙස මේවාට වැඩි මිලක් ලබාදීමට මින් වාසි ලබන කණ්ඩායම් අපේක්ෂා කරන බැවින් බවද සිතිය හැක.

දිනෙන් දින පමාවන මද්‍යකාලීන විසඳුම්

විදුලි අර්බුදයට විසඳුම් ලෙස හදිසි විදුලි මිලදී ගැනීම් (Emergency Power) නැවත්වීමට ලං.වි.ම. සැලසුම් කල 100 MW හා 24×4 MW දැවී තෙල් බලාගාර වල ටෙන්ඩර් පොත් අනුමත කිරීම අමාත්‍යංශය දිනෙන් දින පමා කරයි. අනුමැතිය සඳහා යොමුකර මාස කිහිපයක් ගතවුවද ව්‍යාපාරිකයින්ගේ  අවශ්‍යතාව අනුව එහි ඇති තාක්ෂණික කරුණු වෙනස්කම් කිරීමට යෝජනා කරමින් සිටියි. සැලසු කර ඇති අඩු වියදම් ගලන්ගුරු හා LNG බලාගාර ප්‍රමාදවීම නිසා සැලසු වලට ඇතුලත් කල ඩීසල් වලට වඩා මිලෙන් ඉතා අඩු දැවිතෙල් (HFO) බලාගාර මෙලෙස පමාවීමෙන් සිදුවන්නේ තව තවත් හදිසි විදුලි බලාගාර (Emergency Power) ගැනීමට සිදුවීමයි.

වියදම් අඩු බලාගාර ප්‍රමාද වෙද්දී Emergency Power විදිලි වේගයෙන්

සියලු අඩුවියදම් බලාගාර විවිධ පාර්ශව වල වාසියට නවතා දමමින් හා ප්‍රමාද කරමින් සිටින බලධාරීන් 2019 වසර පළමු කාර්තුව තුල අපේක්ෂාකරන නියඟ කාලගුණයට හා වැඩිවන ඉල්ලුමට විසඳුම් ලෙස වියදම් අධික හදිසි ඩීසල් විදුලිය මිලදී ගැනීම් (Emergency Diesel Power) සඳහා විදිලි වේගයෙන් කටයුතු කරගෙන යයි. 100 MW ක Emergency Power හඳහා කැබිනට් අනුමැතිය දින කීපයකින් ලබාගන්නා බලධාරීන්ට හා රජයට මෙම උනන්දුව ලං. වී.ම. සලසුම්කල අඩුවියදම් බලාගාර සැදීම සඳහා තිබුණි නම් මේවනවිට වසරකට ලං.වි.ම. ලබන රුපියල් බිලියන 50 කට අධික පාඩුවෙන් මිදී ජනතාවට මහත් සේ ප්‍රතිලාභ ලබාදීමට රජයට හැකිවනු ඇත.

මේවනවිට ලං.වි.ම. ට ඇති මුළු ණය ප්‍රමාණය රුපියල් බිලියන 400 කට (කෝටි 40,000) අධිකය. අර්බුධයට විසඳුමක් වන අඩුවියදම් බලාගාර සාදන තෙක් අඩුම වශයෙන් ඉදිරි වසර 5ක කාලය තුල ලං.වි.ම. තවතවත් දැවැන්ත ලෙස පාඩු ලබනු ඇත. තවද වැඩිවන ඉල්ලුම සඳහා කෙටිකාලීන විසඳුම් සඳහා යෑම නිසා මෙම පාඩුව තවත් දෙතුන් ගුණයකින් වැඩිවනු ඇත.

– ලං.වි.ම. ඉංජිනේරු සංගමය

ලංවිම ණය කෝටි 40,000 පනී.. පාඩුව තවත් දෙතුන් ගුණයකින් වැඩිවෙන්න ලගයි..

The Island: Power mafia throttles country with costly emergency power purchases for CEB


by Rathindra Kuruwita


A decision to purchase emergency power, at significantly higher cost, would only increase the losses incurred by the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB), the Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers’ Union (CEBEU) said, yesterday.

CEB Engineers’ Union President Saumya Kumarawadu said yesterday “After the Norochcholai Power Plant was built in 2014, the generation cost of one unit of electricity dropped to Rs. 15.07 and the government was able to reduce the electricity bill by 25%. Since then however no low cost thermal power plants has been added to the system though each year the demand went up by 200 MWs. The cost of one unit of electricity went up to Rs 21.32 in 2017.”

As a result the CEB lost Rs 45 billion in 2017 and the loss increased to Rs. 50 billion in 2018.

“Given the fact that there are delays in the construction of the 300 MW LNG power plant, we will incur more losses in 2019,”he said.

“Bureaucrats and politicians are engaged in a  tug of war to ensure that their allies get the deal. On the other hand, the government is attempting to build two 500MW and one 400 MW LNG plant through Japanese, Indian and Chinese companies. But given the size of our system, the maximum connectable single machine in order to maintain the stability is 300MW.”

The CEBEU head said that the total outstanding loans of the CEB was Rs. 400 billion and that things would continue to get worse for the next six to seven years unless a major low cost power plant was set up.

An energy sector source said that although the CEB had announced that bids were open for emergency power, the relevant officials had not even finalized the tender documents. He added that on average emergency power was procured at around Rs. 30, which is at least Rs. 7 more than the most expensive diesel power electricity unit procured by the CEB.


The Morning: Power on low voltage

•Delays in implementing mid to long-term solutions

Norochcholai power plant
Everyone is running a business and they want to earn commissions. Nobody thinks about the public. The majority of high profile employees are corrupt and those who reveal the corruption will ultimately lose their jobsCeylon Electricity Board Employees’ Union (CEBEU) Convener Ranjan Jayalal
By Maheesha Mudugamuwa

A crisis in the power sector threatens to place the country in darkness in the event of failure to resolve the issue soon.

Sri Lanka is in urgent need of approximately 300 megawatts (MW) of electricity to meet current consumer demand, and failure to meet this demand could likely plunge parts of the country into darkness between the years 2020-2030.

Minister of Power and Renewable Energy Ravi Karunanayake sought Cabinet approval to obtain emergency power purchasing proposals.

The ministry confirmed that Cabinet approval was granted, but that the President instructed the minister to reconsider the move as it could prove expensive. He was instead advised to consider other ways of mitigating the issue.

Ministry sources said that Minister Karunanayake and the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) Engineers’ Union were holding talks to reach a solution to the crisis before looking at purchasing emergency power.

However, sources said that the ministry was unable to make a concrete decision as the CEB was running without a board of directors.

The proposal seeking the approval of the Cabinet to purchase emergency power was submitted by Minister Ravi Karunanayake on 14 January, 2019.

The main objective of the proposal was to procure 100 MW power generators on a lease basis for a period of one year and to call tenders for 75 MW of thermal power for a period of two years, according to the Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy Director (Development) Sulakshana Jayawardena.

He told The Sunday Morning that Cabinet approval was already granted for the proposal.

“This year, the authorities forecast that there will be a dry period from January to April, and therefore, there would be restrictions on hydro power generation. To mitigate that, the CEB has recommended adding 100 MW on a supplementary basis,” he explained.

“We are going to call for tenders and the price per unit will be decided later,” Jayawardena noted.

Growing concern

Meanwhile, Minister Karunanayake’s decision to purchase emergency power from private companies raised concerns among energy experts, as they say that it would negatively impact the CEB due to potential losses that may be incurred by the board, as a result of emergency power purchasing agreements.

They stressed that it was now time for the Government to put politics aside and seriously consider the Long Term Generation Expansion Plan 2018-2037 prepared by the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL).

This plan was drawn up to safeguard the country against the crippling effects of temporarily expensive decisions taken by the authorities.

According to CEB Engineers’ Union President Athula Wanniarachchi, use of emergency power was expensive as the generators that would be utilised would run on diesel, for which the capacity charge would be around Rs. 5 per unit, which would have to be covered for the entire period agreed upon, even if the generators are unused. As a result, the CEB would have to spend a huge sum of money for the emergency purchases.

“For example, if a litre of diesel costs Rs. 100 and we can produce only four units with it, the fuel cost per unit would translate to Rs. 25. In addition, we would need to pay the capital cost. Therefore, all together, the cost of a unit would be around Rs. 30,” Eng. Wanniarachchi stressed.

Highlighting the situation of thermal power generation, he stressed: “Machines also need timely maintenance, for which they need to be stopped. However, since we don’t have enough machines, we are unable to stop them for routine maintenance.

“The country needs an additional 300 MW to operate the machines comfortably without any interruption and without the risk of power cuts,” Eng. Wanniarachchi noted.

Continuous delays

According to CEB statistics, around 70% of the energy requirement of the country is currently provided through thermal power (coal and oil) and the rest is provided through hydro power, with a very small amount of power generated by wind power.

Due to the lack of proper power plants, the country’s entire electricity system is dependent on the Norochcholai Power Plant.

The union stated that if that power plant experienced a breakdown, the situation would take a turn for the worst.

“During last year’s dry season, the Norochcholai Power Plant operated well and didn’t cause any big issues. As of now, the condition of the plant is better. But even now, one machine’s operations are halted for routine maintenance,” he added.

According to the CEB’s plan, three power plants (70 MW, 100 MW, and 150MW) were proposed to meet the demand from 2018 until major power plants are implemented.

Even though the plan was scheduled to be implemented from 2018, the CEB is behind the scheduled plan so far. The CEB Engineers’ Union puts the blame on the PUCSL as they claimed it was the PUCSL which delayed its approval and as a result, the implementation was not executed by the board as expected.

Explaining the situation, Wanniarachchi said: “The CEB’s generation plan was not approved on time by the PUCSL. There are many delays in implementation. They approved it after taking one-and-a-half years to review it – that is the base of the issue.”

Below are additional reasons for the energy crisis, cited by the CEB Eng. Union:

•No steps were taken to set up a large thermal power station after commissioning Stage III of the Norochcholai Power Plant in 2014

•The state of the already tendered 300 MW LNG Power Plant in Kerawalapitiya was pending in court

•No medium-term decision in the form of a solution was taken regarding the planned 100 MW Diesel Power Plant

Eng. Wanniarachchi stressed that thermal power, either coal or LNG, would be less costly than diesel power, and as successive governments failed to push towards that, there’s a deficit of about 300 MW of power at present.

Commenting on the proposed Kerawalapitiya LNG Power Plant, he said: “The blame should be placed on the Government as they handled it poorly. We were planning to tender for a medium-term solution until we procure the big power plants, some diesel power plants, or the 100 MW power plants.

“Those power plants will also be cheaper than emergency power,” he said, adding that those tenders were also discussed without any end in sight, as the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) continuously requests changes.

“We’re unhappy that no steps have been taken with a long-term goal in mind, even though they speak of long-term solutions annually, revisiting the topic at the beginning of every year. As such, we are very dissatisfied as a union.

Explaining how most politicians prefer to play the blame game, Wanniarachchi went on to state that the execution of a viable low-cost solution for the country would require at least five to six years of planning, which no one is willing to take responsibility for.

Running out of time

Justifying the Ministry’s decision to opt for emergency power purchasing, the Ministry’s Director (Development) Jayawardena said: “Now as per the CEB’s plan, some of the plants won’t be developed. However, the growth in annual demand is approximately 5-6%, and it depends on weather conditions, other developments, and construction.”

“They have forecast a dry period, as usual, from January to end-April. In terms of capacity, there will be restrictions on hydro generation and we will not be able to generate hydro power as planned.

“In order to mitigate these sorts of issues, the CEB recommended adding 100 MW of short-term power capacity to meet demand during the period, which resulted in adding it on a supplementary basis.

“We are going to call for tenders, and depending on the result and the outcome of the tenders the Minister is to decide on whether or not to continue these sorts of ad-hoc measures to meet demand,” he added.

When asked whether the CEB was far behind the schedule in the generation plan, Jayawardena stressed that there were certain issues and barriers but that the CEB has planned to have a 300 MW power plant by 2019 and another LNG power plant by 2029.

“Last year, there was a battle between the CEB and PUCSL on getting approval for the long-term power generation plan. Now that it’s approved, they need to overcome their differences and work towards achieving the target, along with all power sector stakeholders,” he explained.

Elaborating on the process of purchasing emergency power, Director Jayawardene said: “Last year, there was an issue with extending the terms of private companies, and after much debate, the Cabinet approved the extension of the term of ACE Power Embiliptiya for a period of three years after considering the electricity requirements in the Southern Province, and is scheduled to expire in 2020. However, the terms of ACE Power Matara and Asia Power Sapugaskanda were not extended; they are still in the system but can’t add to supply as their terms are over.

“Therefore, the CEB needs to call fresh tenders, and after negotiations, the price of a unit would be decided. Usually, the prices vary, but the capacity charges will have to be incurred even if we didn’t run the plan.” He also added that while it’s in use, fuel charges would have to be incurred.

Meanwhile, the PUCSL said the CEB could purchase emergency power only in case of a calamity and that the Cabinet is required to make that decision, and not the PUCSL, further stating that in all other instances, the commission’s approval was necessary.

On inquiry of whether they were aware of the recent cabinet proposal, the commission’s Director Corporate Communications Jayanat Herath said that they were unaware of such a decision.

“The issues between the PUCSL and CEB are over and we approved the CEB’s Long Term Generation Plan last year,” he said.

Last week, Minister Karunanayake sought Canadian and French assistance to find solutions to the expected energy crisis the world, including Sri Lanka, will face in 2020. Ceylon Electricity Board Employees’ Union (CEBEU) Convener Ranjan Jayalal stressed that issues of the CEB were getting worse and that there was no solution for it.

“Everyone is running a business and they want to earn commissions. Nobody thinks about the public. The majority of high profile employees are corrupt and those who reveal the corruption will ultimately lose their jobs,” he said.

Jayalal also alleged that there was a hidden plan to separate the generation division from the CEB and to give it to the private sector, thereby burdening the general public with higher costs.



Why Swiss Challenge LNG deal is disaster for Lanka

By Namini Wijedasa
Experts claim the multibillion dollar South Korean project is disadvantageous to Sri Lanka and like the infamous hedging affair; express concern over take-or- pay terms; say losses could be in billions

Oil, gas and electricity experts have torn into a Power and Energy Ministry call to international bidders to match an unsolicited Korean proposal for a 20-year supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG), pipeline and floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) in just a matter of weeks.

File pic of a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU)

The Swiss Challenge was advertised on November 5, days after the sacking of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, and the industry was given five weeks to bid, extended by a mere seven weeks after media exposure.

The original bid was submitted by the South Korean Government-backed SK E&S Company and first presented to the Cabinet in December 2017 by President Maithripala Sirisena. A Swiss Challenge grants advantage to the initial proposer with an opportunity to match whatever anybody else tenders.

This is to be Sri Lanka’s largest single Government tender, worth an estimated US$ 10bn in LNG orders alone. And the arbitrary manner in which the Ministry manoeuvred the process drew widespread speculation and criticism.

Now, more experts—many with decades of experience in their respective fields—are weighing in. Some did not wish to be quoted owing to contractual obligations. All unanimously questioned the manner in which the “tender” was devised. And the spectre of Sri Lanka’s disastrous hedging deal was roundly evoked.

Sri Lanka will enter into a long-term take-or-pay LNG supply contract, they pointed out. Yet both the Cabinet Appointed Negotiating Committee (CANC) and Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC) comprise “well-meaning but unqualified Sri Lankan officials who are provided with tender documents of unknown origin”. They will shape the direction of a US$ 10bn sovereign commitment.

“We even accept that project proponents may view the proposal as truly beneficial to Sri Lanka,” said an international source who has worked nearly forty years in oil and gas technology and floating systems. “But as with all complex oil and gas transactions, in which companies pass on as much risk as possible to unsuspecting host Governments, the devil is in the detail.”

Lack of expertise

There is no qualified business consultant to safeguard Sri Lanka’s interests. “A TEC and a CANC of non-relevant professionals are responsible for making an untutored recommendation based on what is, at best, a hazardous procurement practice never before undertaken in this country,” he warned.

“It must be systematic,” insisted Tilak Siyambalapitiya, a senior energy consultant. “Bangladesh started the process in the proper way in 2015 and has now got the terminal up and running. Sri Lanka does not even want to issue a formal solicitation and expects friends of the Prime Minister to build one terminal, friends of the President to build another terminal, friends of you-know-who to build more terminals. This is all a farce for someone to push a project in, avoiding all bidding procedures.”

An “unusual” condition of this Swiss Challenge is that US$ 10mn is mandated to SK E&S (for having submitted an unsolicited proposal with limited technical information) should a competitor’s bid be accepted. “The invitation to tender has most instructions on how and when this US$ 10mn payment has to be made, immediately and guaranteed to SK&E and the Government of Sri Lanka,” the expert said.

Sri Lanka needs LNG as a common, lower cost and “relatively environmentally benign” energy source. But any gas procured must power not only electricity generation but industrial thermal needs and transport. This has not been taken into account. The country’s LNG requirements have not even been identified.

There must be an open-technology solution where the infrastructure investors derive their return in a predictable manner, such as tolling charges for use of the facility. It must not be tied to the supply of gas, industry professionals urged.

But according to a cabinet memorandum presented in 2017, “A company backed by the Government of South Korea has agreed to provide an LNG terminal free of charge subject to the condition that compulsory purchase of 500,000 MT per annum during the first 5 years and 1,000,000 MT per annum during subsequent 20 years under the prices prevail in the international market.”

There was universal criticism about the proposed mode of purchase. “The contract they are said to be negotiating is a disastrous one—take-or-pay,” said Dr Siyambalapitiya. “So when our hydro, wind and solar are good and demand does not grow, we have to pay for unused gas in their tanks, as well.”

The rationale for a Swiss Challenge was repeatedly questioned. “Such a strategic procurement, with high ramifications to our energy security and long-term economic development, should be structured professionally and tendered globally along conventional lines,” said Saliya Wickramasuriya, former head of the Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat (PRDS) and independent consultant.

“It may be argued that Swiss Challenge is quicker, but with limited competition pricing lots of risk into their bid, at what cost?” he asked. “And why on earth does the long-term supply of LNG to Sri Lanka need to be an unsolicited proposal?”

For the Swiss Challenge to even work, the Korean proposal should have been vetted by competent technical consultants for all aspects of viability. “It is not clear who did this and it appears not to have gone through a valid process,” Mr Wickramasuriya said.” We are aware some Government institutions have pointed out serious concerns of the original proposal, but these do not seem to have been heeded.”

The project, several inside sources revealed, is “being pushed from the highest levels even ignoring the concerns raised by CANC”. The tender preparers briefed neither the CANC nor the TEC. The documents were merely handed over.

There are no Petroleum Resources Development Ministry (PRDM) or Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) officials represented in the two bodies. And if the matter ends up in court, as did the hedging deal, the TEC and the CANC are likely to be censured.

Company has no experience

An important element of the Korean contract is the supply and operation of an offshore FSRU. SK E&S has no experience of ever running one.

“And because of this, the tender also does not seek the same from other bidders,” said Mr Wickramasuriya. “It merely asks if the ship-builder has experience.”

“This is pure madness from our side,” he said. “We have become guinea pigs for some operator to experiment if they can operate an FSRU while dumping their expensive gas into our country at high price.”

Who drafted the tender documents? The Power and Energy Ministry, while authorised by Cabinet to hire consultants, did not do so. The Korean company drew them up at its own cost. It is difficult to see how this process safeguards the interests of Sri Lanka and the public.

“The notes pertaining to the preparation of these documents need to be made public, as well as the selection process and experience of the preparers,” Mr Wickramasuriya said. Everything must be thoroughly vetted by the PRDS, among others.

If Sri Lanka receives any bids within the stipulated two months, evaluation “categorically needs expert guidance”. “The current set of officials may face serious reprimand in the future for taking the responsibility of making untutored recommendations if the outcome does not meet expectations of either time or cost,” he warned.

“Why doesn’t the Government simply not call for competitive bids for an ‘X’ amount of natural gas at this maximum price, for this long, starting from this date, and leave the industry to work out how to make it happen?” he asked. “What we need is gas, not an FSRU! Not only are we over-prescribing this tender, we are playing to someone else’s music.”

A properly executed tender would take a year to prepare and six to 12 months to respond to, professionals said. Not only is there a lack of material in this tender. There are constraints on the solution: A newly-built FSRU will take over two years to commission unless the proposers already have one in the pipeline, which would raise separate questions. A successful challenge within the allotted time frame, therefore, seems unlikely.

“A lot of focus is on the FSRU being free of charge,” said one expert. “This is a false narrative on multiple counts. There is a tolling agreement specified, but not included in the tender documents or Korean proposal, which will be negotiated later. So any claims of a free FSRU is premature, to say the least.”

Also, the FSRU cost (approximately US$ 300mn) is insignificant—less than five percent—when compared with the size of the supply contract.

“Since we believe the pricing contract to be unfavourable to Sri Lanka, even if they throw in the FSRU for free, we will pay more,” he pointed out.

“We are merely avoiding the capital cost of the FSRU upfront. That could’ve been done with a standard lease agreement.”

Environmental impact

There has been no environmental impact assessment (EIA) despite the proposed facility requiring pressurised, highly-explosive, gas pipelines to run under densely populated areas. “Natural gas lines are in a different league in terms of hazards,” he warned. “Even minor leaks result in major fatalities and many projects are delayed through public protest in affected areas, despite land being acquired.”

There have also been no met ocean studies, soil studies and bathymetry or pipeline route surveys. It usually takes six months or more to choose suitable location, said the international expert earlier quoted. The full impact of the monsoon will also be felt on the offshore FSRU.

The proposed location–about 9km outside the Colombo Port beyond an exclusion zone defined by the Sri Lanka Ports Authority–has not been reviewed against all hazards. A navigational simulation was done to define the exclusion zone but there has been no comprehensive safety study.

The tender envisages the purchase of LNG at a price indexed to oil. Professionals say this is deeply problematic. From being just ten percent a decade ago, the world spot market has grown to 50 percent of volume traded. This indicates significant uncontracted fuel in the market.

“That, in turn, gives rise to price arbitrage opportunities between markets, which could both reduce and increase parcel price depending on circumstances,” the international expert said. “However, the trend is that the spot market will most often offer a price advantage over term.”

Having a price indexed to crude oil will prevent Sri Lanka from taking advantage of this in future, when the country’s demand has stabilised and procurement practices have matured.

“The proposed contract will lock Sri Lanka for 20 years to an uneconomical price with a glut in the LNG market,” he warned. “Soon, 50 percent of LNG will be sold in the spot market to which Sri Lanka will not have access. But the same deal provides for SK E&S to procure the gas in the spot market and sell to Sri Lanka on take-or-pay terms. I expect the loss here to be in the billions.”

CT- Govt causing delays in constructing major power plants – CEBEU

Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) engineers accused the Government of obstructing the construction of major power plants, in order to purchase emergency power on a short-term basis, at very high prices, from the beginning of the drought season every year.

They also alleged that the Ministry of Power, Energy and Business Development is not granting approval for the five 100 MW and 24 x 4 MW Diesel Power Plants which have been proposed as a medium-term solution to the power demand.

“The Ministry is not approving the Tender Book, which was prepared on the five 100 MW and 24 x 4 MW Diesel Power Plants and is only engaging in pointing out faults. We cannot make draft a Tender Book or change specifications according to the needs of businessmen,” Executive Committee member of the CEB Engineers Union (CEBEU) Athula Wanniarachchi said.

This accusation comes following the Cabinet, last Monday, approving the purchase of 100 MW of emergency power in order to supply electricity without interruption to the people during the drought period, which begins in February/March.

It has been decided to purchase 100 MW of emergency power for one year as a solution to the power deficit of 300 MW which exists at present and until such time, major power plants are constructed. However, if power is needs to be purchased during the second year, those prices too have been queried through the Tender papers.

“That means even if they say it is for one year only, it is apparent that they are preparing to purchase emergency power continuously. However, what we have to do is not purchase emergency power every year by February and March but to build large scale power plants. Nevertheless, what the government is doing is joining the business mafia and bringing various obstructions to constructing major plants,” he said further.

However, Ministry Media Spokesman Sulakshana Jayawardena said that the Ministry was not intentionally causing delays. He said, the Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC) appointed for the 100MW barge diesel power plant to be established in Galle was appointed only on 28 July 2017. Similarly the TEC for the 24MW x 4 power plants was appointed only on 11 August 2017.

Yet, engineers point out that although the 100MW barge and the 24MW x 4 are Diesel Power plants, they can be connected to high voltages. But, they said that if emergency power is necessary to be connected to any required places, it would not be possible due to technical reasons.

Since no major power plant was constructed subsequent to the third phase of the Norochcholai Coal Power Plant being completed in 2013, energy experts continuously warned that a serious crisis will arise in the energy sector.

There is a case being heard in Court regarding the awarding of the Tender regarding the 300 MW LNG Power Plant, which was scheduled to be constructed at Kerawalapitiya as a solution to this crisis. Although it was due to have been added to the National Power Grid in 2019 that will not happen now.

At the same time, engineers allege that the government is delaying releasing lands required for the Clean Coal Power Plant of 300 MW to be constructed at Fowl Point in Trincomalee.


 JAN 21 2019

Daily Mirror: The Other Power Struggle

This country didn’t have a Power Generation Plan (Power Plant Construction Plan) from 2014 to 2018. Loss to the nation due to not having a plan and cancellation of Sampur Power Plant is Rs 650 Billion
We are demanding people with professional integrity for the key positions of Public Utilities Commission.

Daily Mirror| CEB Engineers highlight alleged misdeeds of corrupt PUCSL officials

The Engineers Union of the CEB yesterday castigated the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) that the actions and policies of the power monitor has jeopardized the Power Generation Plan and the damage cost was a whopping Rs. 650 billion to the country.

Engineers charged that corrupt officials at PUCSL who have formed an unholy alliance were wreaking havoc on the Electrical Power Industry.

Mr. Athula Wanniarachchi, highlighting alleged misdeed of the PUCSL said among those who scuttle the implementation of the Long Term Least Cost Power Generation Plan noted that among surreptitious elements there were foreign funded non-governmental organizations.

READ FULL ARTICLE HERE: http://tinyurl.com/yc6ulwh5

Gloomy days are ahead due to the impending power crisis solely due to the intentional delaying in granting approval of 20 year Least Cost Long Term Generation Expansion Plan (LCLTGEP). The country was left without a generation plan for nearly four years 2014-2018.This inevitably resulted in losing a number of low cost power plants which would have been in operation, had the approval been granted on due time. This blunder would cost the nations dearly by an enormous power crisis in the near future which would also place CEB under immense economical turmoil. It is estimated that the chaotic situation brought about by the PUCSL through their delaying tactics and manipulations would cost the country a whopping Rs. 536 billion. This estimate is arrived at by analysis of data available with planning and System Operations branches through careful and precise calculations with use of world renowned SDDP (Stochastic Dual Dynamic Programme) software. this foregone cost is due to the previously planned power plants including Sampur Powerplant not being brought in to operating in due course and as a result of the advent of costly liquid fuelled power plants.

If the planned low cost power plants were put into service, the cost of generated electricitywould be Rs, 10 per unit, whereas that generated by a liquid fuelled power plant would amount to at least Rs. 25 per unit by current world market prices for petroleum, Mr. Wanniarachchi stressed.

Daily Mirror 12/10/2018

LankaCNewws| රට දැවැන්ත විදුලි අර්බුදයක.. සැලසුම් අවුලෙන් පාඩුව කෝටි 65,000යි.

උපයෝගීතා කොමිසමේ දූෂිත නිලධාරීන් විදුලිබල ක්ෂේත්ත්‍රය විනාශකිරීමේ මෙහෙයුමක

උපයෝගීතා කොමිසමේ නිලධාරීන් කිහිපදෙනෙක් විවිධ අරමුණු ඇතිව ක්‍රියාත්මකවන අගතිගාමී කණ්ඩායම් කිහිපයක් සමග විදුලිබල ක්ෂේත්‍රය විනාශ කරමින් සිටියි. විදේශ මුදල් වලින් යැපෙන පරිසරය සුරකීමේ ලේබලය ගසාගෙන මෙරට ආර්ථිකය බංකොලොත් කිරීමේ විදේශීය න්‍යායපත්‍රයකට වැඩ කරන රාජ්‍ය නොවන සංවිධාන, තම ව්‍යාපාරික සැලසුම් ක්‍රියාත්මක කරගැනීමට රටේ සැලසුම් වලට දැඩිලෙස බලපෑම් කරන ජාත්‍යන්තර හා දේශීය ව්‍යාපාරික සංවිධාන, රට විනාශකර හෝ බලය ඇති කාලය තුල ඇතිතරම් මුදල් සොයන්න වෙහෙසෙන දූෂිත දේශපාලකයි හා ඔවුන්ගේ හිතවතුන්, මොවුන්ගේ මුදල් වලින් යැපෙන හා ඒ වෙනුවෙන් හඬනගන විවිධ ව්‍යාජ ලේබල් ගසාගෙන් සිටින කණ්ඩායම් කිහිපයක්ද මේ අතර සිටින අතර මහජන උපයෝගිතා කොමිසමේ නිලධාරින් කිහිපදෙනෙක් විදුලිබල ක්ෂේත්‍රය නියාමනය කිරීමට ඔවුන්ට ලබාදී ඇති බලතල අනිසි ලෙස යොදාගෙන මෙම මෙහෙයුම ක්‍රියාත්මක කරයි.

නීති කඩමින් විදුලි සැලසුම් අවුල් කරයි

මහජන උපයෝගිත කොමිසම විසින් මෙම මාෆියා කණ්ඩායම සමග 2014 සිට රටේ විදුලිබලාගාර හදන සැලසුම්  (විදුලි ජනන සැලසුම්) අවුල් කරන ලදී. 2015 සිට 2034 දක්වා වූ 20 අවුරුදු අඩු වියදම් දීර්ග කාලීන විදුලි ජනන සැලැස්ම ඉතා සැලසුම් සහගතව අනුමත නොකර අවුරුදු 2 ක් පමණ ප්‍රමාද කරන කොමිසම රාජ්‍ය නොවන සංවිධානය හා මෙම මාෆියා කණ්ඩායම සමග එක්ව 2014 න් පසුව රටට අඩුවියදමින් විදුලිය සැපයීමට තිබූ එකම බලාගාරය වන 500MW ක දැවැන්ත සාම්පූර් බලාගාරය ඉවත්කර අවු 20 ක සැලැස්ම වෙනුවට තෙල් බලාගාර කිහිපයක් හා පුනර්ජනනීය බලාගාර කිහිපයක් සහිත අවු 4 ක් නීති විරෝධී සැලැස්මක් අනුමත කළහ. 2017 මාර්තු මස කොමිසමට යවනලද 2018 සිට 2037 දකවා කාලය සඳහා ලං.වි.ම. විසින් සාදන ලද මිශ්‍ර ජනන සැලැස්ම මුළුමනින්ම වෙනස් කර ඔව්න්ගේ ව්‍යාපාරික හා දේශපාලන හිතවතුන් සමග එක්ව නීති විරෝධී (ව්‍යාපාරික) සැලැස්මක් සාදා මෙම සැලැස්ම අනුමත කිරීමද වසර 1 ½ පමණ ප්‍රමාද කරන ලදී.

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අනාගතයේ රට දැවැන්ත විදුලි අර්බුධයක

මේ අනුව 2014 සිට 2018 දකවා අපරටට විදුලි ජනන සැලැස්මක් නොමැති වීමනිසා සහ සැදීමට සූදානම්ව තිබූ අඩු වියදම් බලාගාර නැවත්වීම නිසා අවම වශෙයෙන් තවත් අවුරුදු 6-7ක කාලයක් රට දැවැන්ත විදුලි අර්බුධයකට තල්ලුකර ඇත. මෙම කාලය තුල දැවැන්ත මූල්‍යමය අර්බුධයකට ලං.වි.ම. ට මුහුණදීමට සිදුවන අතර අවශ්‍ය තරම් බලාගාර ඉදිනොවීම නිසා පැය ගණන් විදුලි කැපීම හා බොහෝ විදුලි බින්දවටීම් සිදුවීම වැඩිවන විදුලි ඉල්ලුම හමුවේ වැලැක්විය නොහැකිවනු ඇත.

සැලසුම් අවුල් කිරීම නිසා වන පාඩුව ?

උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම විසින් 2015 වසරේ සිට විදුලි බලාගාර හදන සැලසුම් අනුමත නොකර විදුලි ක්ෂේත්‍රය අවුල් කිරීම නිසා රටට සිදුවන පාඩුව රු. කෝටි 53,617 ක් (බිලියන 536 ක්) පමණ වන බව ලං.වි.ම. සැලසුම හා පද්ධති මෙහෙයුම් අංශ වල දත්ත අනුව ලොව සුලභව භාවිතාකරන පිළිගත් SDDP (Stochastic Dual Dynamic Program) මෘදුකාංගයක්  මගින් ගණනය කර ඇත. සැලසුම් කල සාම්පුර් සහ අනෙකුත් අඩුවියදම් බලාගාර නැවත්වීම හා ප්‍රමාද වීම නිසා ඒ වෙනුවට වියදම් අධික තෙල් බලාගාර ක්‍රියාත්මක කිරීමට සිදුවන බැවින් මෙම පාඩුව සිදුවෙනු ඇත. ලං.වි.ම. සැලසුම් කරනලද බලාගාර වලින් රු. 10 කට අඩුවෙන් විදුලි ඒකකයක් නිපදවීමට හැකි වුවත් පැවතී තෙල් මිලගණන් අනුව තෙල් බලාගාර වලින් නිපදවෙන විදුලි ඒකකයක සාමාන්‍ය මිල රු 25 ක් පමණ වනු ඇත. හදිසියේ මිලදීගන්නා ඩිසල් බලාගාරයක ඒකකයක රු. 30 ක් පමණ වේ. නමුත් පසුගිය දිනවල ඩීසල් මිල 30% පමණ හා දැවී තෙල් මිල 15% කින් පමණ වැඩිවීම නිසා වැඩි වූ මිලගණන් මෙලෙසම පවතියොත් මෙම පාඩුව රු. කෝටි 65,000 ක් (බිලියන 650ක්) පමණ වනු ඇත.  මෙය කටුනායක අධිවේගී මාර්ගය වැනි ව්‍යාපෘති 12 ක් පමණ කළහැකි මුදලකි.

2002 මහජන උපයෝගිතා කොමිසන් පනත අනුව තමන් විසින් නියාමනය කරන ආයතනවල මූල්‍යමය ස්ථාවරභාවය (Financial stability) පවත්වාගෙන යෑම කොමිසමේ වගකීමක් වුවද එහි අධ්‍යක්ෂ ජනරාල් වරයා සහ ඇතැම් නිලධාරින් රට සංවර්ධනය සදහා යොදාගත හැකි මුදල් ද්වන්ත ලෙස විනාශ කරමින් ලං.වි.ම. පාඩු ලබන තත්වයකට පත්කර පෞද්ගලික කරණය කිරීමේ මෙහෙයුමක සිටින බව ඉතා පැහැදිලිය.

මෙසේ නාස්තිවන මුදල් භාණ්ඩ මිල වැඩිකිරීමෙන් හෝ බදු මගින් රජයෙන් වක්‍රාකාරව ජනතාවගෙන් අයකරගැනීම මගින් ඒ බර දරන වන්නේද රටේ ජනතාවටමය.

ස්වාධීන කොමිසමක න්‍යායන් කඩයි

ස්වාධීන කොමිසමකට මත වාදයක් තිබිය නොහැක. නමුත් මෙම කොමිසමේ පරිනත නොවූ දූෂිත නිලධාරීන් ප්‍රධාන මාධ්‍ය වල ප්‍රසිද්ධියේ තම මතවාදයන් ඉදිරිපත් කරන අතර ජනමාධ්‍ය වලට සාවද්ධ්‍ය කරුණු කියා ජනතාව නොමග යවයි.

කොමිසමේ දූෂිත නිලධාරින් ආරක්ෂා කරන දේශපාලන බලවතුන් කවුද ?

කොමිසම විදුලි ජනන සැලසුම් අනුමත කරන ක්‍රියාවලියේදී විදුලිබල පනත උල්ලංගනය කරමින් නීති විරෝධී ලෙස කටයුතුකර ඇති බව නීතිපති වරයා විසින් තහවුරුකර ඇත. මෙමගින් කොමිසන් නිලධාරින් රටේ විදුලි බලාගාර හදන සැලැසුම් 2014 සිට අවුල් කල බව රටටම ඔප්පුවී ඇත. මෙම නිලධාරින් ඉවත් කර විදුලිබල ක්ෂේස්ත්රයට මොවුන් කරන හානිය නවත්වන බවට අතිගරු ජනාධිපති තුමා සහ අගමැති තුමා පොරොන්දු විය. කොමිසමේ අධ්‍යක්ෂ ජෙනරාල් වරයා කොමිසමෙන් ඉවතකල බවටත් උපයෝගිත කොමිසම අයත් අමාත්‍යංශයේ ලේඛම් වරයාත් අප අමාත්‍යාංශයත් තහවුරුකල පසු විද්වත් වෘතීය සමිතියක් ලෙස අප මෙම රජයේ උසස් නිලධාරින් විශ්වාස කලත් 2018 මයි මැයි මස සිට ලං.වි.ම. සමග කිසිඳු රාජකාරියකට සම්බන්ද නොවූ මෙම අධ්‍යක්ෂ ජෙනරාල්වරයා මාස 3කට පසු යලි කරලියට එන්නේ කෙසේද?

දැන් ඔහු නීත්පති වරයාගේ උපදෙස්ද නොතකා පෙර වැරදීම සිදුකරමින් විදුලිබල ක්ෂේස්ත්‍රය නැවතත් අවුල්කිරීමට පටන්ගෙන ඇත. ආණ්ඩුවේ ඇතැම් දේශපාලකයින් තම ව්‍යාපාරික අරමුණු මොහුලවා ඉටුකරගැනීමට ප්‍රසිද්ධියේ මෙම බංකොලොත් නිලධාරින් ආරක්ෂා කරයි.

විසඳුම් නැති නිසා අප සංගමය වෘතීයසමිති ක්‍රියාමාර්ග වලට

රටේ ආර්ථිකයටත් ජනජීවිතයටත් ඉතා වැදගත් විදුලිබල ක්ෂේත්‍රය නියාමනය කිරීමට සුදුසු නිලධාරීන් මහජන උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම වැනි උත්තරීතර ආයතන වලට පත්කිරීම රජයේ වගකීමකි. එසේ කරන බවට අතිගරු ජනාධිපති තුමා, අගමැතිතුමා ඇතුළු සියලු වගකිවයුතු පාර්ශවයන් පොරොන්දු වුවද මෙතෙක් ඒ සඳහා විසඳුමක් ලබා දී නොමැති නොමැත.

මෙම තත්වය යටතේ මහජන උපයෝගීතා කොමිසම සම්බන්ධ කිසිඳු රාජකාරියකට සහය නොවීමේ වෘතිය සමිති ක්‍රියාමාර්ගයක් ලං.වි.ම. ඉංජිනේරු සංගමය මේ වනවිට ආරම්භකර ඇත.

තවද සැලසු අවුල්කර රට විදුලි අර්බුධයකට තල්ලුකර තමන්ට ප්‍රතිලාභ ලැබෙන වියදම් අධික තෙල් බලාගාර මිලයට ගැනීම මෙම මාෆියා කණ්ඩායම් වල අරමුණ බැවින් ඒකකයක් රු. 30 ක් පමණ වන හදිසි ඩීසල් බලාගාර ටෙන්ඩර් වලට හා මිල පිළිබඳව නිගමනයක් නොමැතිව විනිවිදභාවයකින් තොරව බලධාරීන් විසින් ඉදිකිරීමට සැලසුම්කරණ තවත් බලාගාර කිහිපයකට සහය නොවීමට අප සංගමය තීරණය කර ඇත.

ගැටලුවලට කඩිනම්ව විසඳුම් නොලැබුණහොත් අප දැඩි වෘතීය සමිති ක්‍රියාමාර්ග වලට ඉදිරියේදී එළඹෙනු ඇත.

– ලං.වි.ම. ඉංජිනේරු සංගමය