US$ 2bn worth of wind energy projects stuck in limbo



Four international companies — with an estimated US$ 2bn (Rs 729bn) worth of wind energy projects stuck in limbo for over two years — have sought an urgent meeting with President Ranil Wickremesinghe to break the impasse.

In a letter to the President, the local representatives of Mingyang Smart Energy Group Ltd, Envision Energy Ltd, Jade Power/Hydrostor and China Machinery Engineering Corporation pointed out that their projects were under consideration for more than two years by the Board of Investment (BOI), the Sustainable Energy Authority (SEA) and the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB).

They requested the President’s “urgent intervention to bring these projects to fruition as they are being long-delayed at massive cost to the country”.

The BOI is the lead agency in the initiative, the companies said, adding that all their projects were processed and recommended through expressions of interest called in 2021 by the State Ministry of Renewable Energy.

And, as early as October 2021, the previous Government’s Cabinet-Appointed Management Committee (CAMCI) had kicked off the approval process by seeking information from the SEA and the CEB on the respective investments, the letter said.

The companies, which have styled themselves as the Offshore Wind Energy Projects Promoters’ Group, claim that it was found their proposals fall within the scope allowed by a Cabinet subcommittee appointed in 2021—that is, that their applications do not conflict with any other applications for the locations mentioned. The subcommittee reportedly recommended on March 2022 that memorandums of understanding (MoU) be signed with six proponents (one has since dropped out).

“Of these, only one MoU was signed with Adani Green Energy,” the group states. “Subsequently, the CAMCI being non-operational, the remaining MoUs were not signed.”

While Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera and State Investment Promotion Minister Dilum Amunugama have both sought to expedite the projects, they have made little progress.

(Sunday Times)


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