IOC subsidiary to release 6,000 tonnes of diesel to help ease power crisis in Lanka
Power cuts of more than 13 hours occurred on Thursday, the longest since 1996, when a strike by public entity employees caused a 72-hour blackout.
The government on Wednesday extended nationwide daily power cuts from seven a.m. to 10 a.m. due to the unavailability of fuel to generate hydroelectricity. In order to reduce power cuts, the government ordered the state fuels entity, Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB), to buy diesel from LIOC, the Lankan subsidiary of IOC.
CEB officials said the LIOC had agreed to release 6,000 MT of diesel to generate thermal power so that power outages could be reduced by two hours. Sri Lanka has been facing a seven-hour power outage since the start of the month.
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A sudden rise in commodity prices and a fuel shortage forced tens of thousands of people to queue for hours outside gas stations. All basic necessities are in short supply due to import restrictions imposed by the forex crisis.
India recently announced a $1 billion line of credit to Sri Lanka as part of its financial assistance to the country to tackle the economic crisis after a previous $500 billion line of credit. in February to help him buy petroleum products.
India’s economic relief program provided temporary comfort. “A cargo under the Indian line of credit will arrive tomorrow (Friday) evening. The Ceylon Electricity Board will receive fuel from April 2. We can reduce the power cuts to some extent after that,” the minister of electricity said. ‘Energy Pavithra Wanniarachchi to journalists.
Meanwhile, angry citizens have been staging silent protests across the country for weeks against what they say is the government’s mishandling of the economic and energy crisis.