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Govt explores wind power potential in the North East with Adani assistance

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The government has already explored the offshore wind power potential in the country especially in the North and East, expediting two mega wind power projects of 286 MW in Mannar and 234 MW in Pooneryn undertaken by India’s Adani Green Energy Ltd for an investment of over US$ 500 million.

Adani has requested the government to include their claim for carbon credit in their project contract under Sri Lanka Carbon Crediting Scheme (SLCCS) established for supporting local clean projects to benefit from climate finance for the Greenhouse Gas emission (GHG) reduction, official sources said.

It has also demanded a government guarantee for their investment in the two projects or to keep shares of another state owned business enterprise as a surety for their money dumped in those projects.

Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera disclosed that Adani Green Energy has been given approval to implement the projects in August and it has expressed commitment to complete the projects by December 2024.

A cabinet paper on the same projects, dated August 14, 2023, noted that it should be considered as a government-to-government arrangement.

This was the strategy adopted by the government to award the wind power projects in Mannar and Poonaryn, to Adani Green without calling for competitive bids and selecting the most beneficial deal, considering it as a government-to-government proposal.

The cabinet had already considered all aspects of the agreement between the government and Adani Green Energy Ltd and “authorised all the parties to enter into the MoU and to proceed with the required future action”.

According to proposed power purchase agreement, Adani Company has quoted the selling price of wind power unit to be generated by Mannar wind power plant at around $0.14 cents equivalent to around Rs. 46.

The project also included the fixing of three new transformers at Nadukuda grid substation and the laying of the transmission line from the wind power plant to grid substation at a cost of more than double the estimate.

The time period of the public private partnership agreement is 30 years, normally it should be 20 years, a senior official said.

It has been proposed to procure one unit of electricity, from Pooneryn Wind-Solar Hybrid Energy Park, at Rs.46. A total of 234 MW of electricity is generated from the power plant.

The agreements on all other electricity generation projects were signed for 20 years, but the projects of India’s Adani Group had been signed for 30 years.

Adani Green Energy LTD is also eying to take over the contract of laying 173km 400kv transmission line from Kilinochchi to Habarana at an estimated cost of $135 million, he revealed.

(Sunday Times)

Sri Lanka Mirror has learnt from sources close to the project that the proposed rate by Adani is 30% cheaper than the stated Rs 46 and is actually hitting a minimums 10 cents approximate rate. 

The Pricing benefit for the consumers for the proposed Wind Power Project is actually lesser than Fossil Fuel and what it is actually being portrayed by the vested interested parties in the CEB with the Wind Energy Project Saving 50Mn USD+ per annum moving out of Sri Lanka.

The current failed power generation is gobbling up precious dollar resources and is at whopping generation costs of 45-60 SL Rupees or even higher at times. 

CEB has not allowed advent of IPPs where all across the globe including our neighbours like Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nepal and India have all invited Independent Power producers (IPPs) and are reaping benefits of competitive tariffs and reliable generation.

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IMF approves Sri Lanka program review

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The International Monetary Fund has approved a review of Sri Lanka’s program, Foreign Minister Ali Sabry has said.

On a X post, he has said, “This achievement is a testament to our dedication to driving forward economic reforms and securing a prosperous future for all Sri Lankans.”

According to the State Minister of Finance – Shehan Semasinghe, “a favorable outcome from the review is expected to unlock the 3rd tranche of approximately USD 330 million”.

The IMF had earlier said Sri Lanka had made “sufficient progress” on debt restructuring for a review on June 12, despite final deals pending with bilateral creditors and private creditors.

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Another probe related to Easter Sunday attacks

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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has appointed a Committee of Inquiry to investigate the actions taken by the State Intelligence Service (SIS), Chief of National Intelligence (CNI), and other relevant authorities concerning prior intelligence received about the bomb attacks on April 21, 2019. This decision follows the findings of the Final Report of the Commission of Inquiry, dated January 31, 2021, which highlighted that Indian Intelligence agencies and other sources had provided advance warnings about the impending attacks.

The Committee of Inquiry will be chaired by Ms. A.N.J. De Alwis, Retired Judge of the High Court. Other esteemed members of the committee include SLAS special grade Officer Ms. K.N.K. Somaratne and Senior Lawyer Mr. W.M.A.N. Nishane, AAL. 

The committee’s mandate includes examining whether actions or measures were taken by the SIS, CNI, and other relevant authorities based on the prior information or intelligence on an impending attack on April 21, 2019 by Indian intelligence agencies and any other sources and if so, adequacy of the actions and measure taken by the SIS, CNI and other relevant authorities. 

Additionally, the committee will investigate the circumstances surrounding the Directorate of Military Intelligence’s (DMI) and Criminal Investigation Department’s (CID) initial belief that the Vavunathivu killing of two police officers on November 30, 2018, was connected to the LTTE. This belief was held for four months before suspects with alleged links to the National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ) were identified.

A compact disk containing the Final Report of the Commission of Inquiry on the Bomb Attacks of April 21, 2019, has been provided to the committee. The President has authorized the committee to inquire relevant officials and examine pertinent documents to thoroughly investigate these matters.

Ms. Sarathanjali Manoharan, Senior Assistant Secretary to the President, will serve as the Secretary to the Committee of Inquiry. The committee is expected to submit its report, including findings and recommendations, to the President by September 15, 2024.

(President’s Media Division)

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New, free train ride for pilgrims visiting Mihintale (Video)

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Cabinet Spokesman Mass Media Minister Dr. Bandula Gunawardena has said that a new short train ride between Anuradhapura and Mihintale will be arranged for pilgrims during the Poson season.

He said this at the Cabinet briefing held today (June 12) at the Government Information Department.

Since work on the Northern railway line have been delayed, 400 special buses will be deployed to Anuradhapura instead during the Poson season, he added.

Noting that a special railway line from Anuradhapura to Mihintale has been reconstructed,  the minister said that Sri Lanka Railways has been directed to arrange special, free train rides on this line for pilgrims.

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