Thursday, September 29, 2022

10-hour daily power cuts to be experienced by Sri Lanka?

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In the midst of the financial crisis, Sri Lanka will experience 10-hour daily power outages beginning Wednesday, according to the island nation’s Public Utilities Commission.

According to Xinhua, the Ceylon Electricity Board claimed in a statement that they were “compelled to conduct demand control measures due to inadequate power output as a result of fuel constraint and generator unavailability.” According to the Commission, Sri Lanka has been experiencing power outages since February due to declining hydropower plant output and fuel shortages, which have hampered thermal power plant operations.

Meanwhile, the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) said on Tuesday that the nation would face a fuel shortage on Wednesday and Thursday, according to Xinhua.

“We were unable to discharge 37,500 tonnes of fuel cargo on Tuesday as anticipated. As a result, we ask that the public refrain from queuing at fuel filling stations on March 30 and 31. Sumith Wijesinghe, Chairman of the CPC, warned the media.

Wijesinghe stated that the remaining fuel inventories would be allocated to vital services.

Since March 8, Sri Lanka’s currency has been depreciated by over SLR 90 versus the US dollar.

Due to the collapse of the tourism sector, Sri Lanka’s economy has been in free fall since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Sri Lanka is now suffering from a foreign exchange shortfall, which has resulted in fuel, electricity, and gas scarcity, and has sought economic aid from friendly nations.

More than USD 500 million in foreign currency swaps were supplied by India to enhance Sri Lanka’s foreign reserves, bringing the total to USD 900 million. Under the Asian Clearance Arbitration, India also extended the payback period for Sri Lanka’s USD 500 million debt.

On March 17, during Sri Lankan Finance Minister Basil Rajapaksha’s two-day visit to India, Sri Lanka inked a USD 1 billion credit line agreement with India for the purchase of food, medicine, and other vital products.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) suggested a range of measures, including tax increases, for Sri Lanka’s macroeconomic stability and to offset detrimental effects on the vulnerable and poor on Friday.

The study advocated the implementation of a realistic and cohesive approach to restore macroeconomic stability and debt sustainability while safeguarding vulnerable people and decreasing poverty via reinforced, well-targeted social safety nets.

Sri Lanka’s Finance Minister, Basil Rajapakse, is set to visit Washington in April to seek IMF aid for the country’s economic problems.

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