Jul 13, 2019

CEB to obtain Rs 15 billion loan to cover up outstanding dues owed to CPC

The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) has decided to obtain a Rs 15 billion loan from a state bank to cover up its due payments on fuel purchases, a senior Power and Energy Ministry official said.

At present, the electricity board owes the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation around Rs 80 billion over fuel purchases, prompting fears of power outages among the public.

Warnings of power cuts had been issued after the CPC suspended fuel supply to the CEB citing its outstanding payments last week. The matter had later been resolved after President Maithripala Sirisena instructed the Finance Ministry to pay off the loans.

However, the CEB is planning to request the treasury to write-off a portion of its loans or to introduce a new electricity tariff structure since it has lost huge revenue due to subsidized electricity supply, Power and Energy Ministry Director Sulakshana Jayawardana said.

According to the CEB’s Annual Report for 2018, the CEB had lost Rs 80 billion worth revenue by providing subsidized electricity for households, hotels, industries, and even religious places of worship, under the current tariff structure.