SINGAPORE, September 16, 2006 (LBO) – Japan has come forward to help Sri Lanka expand its energy mix, with financial backing to build a liquefied natural gas power plant, a top official said. Sri Lanka’s Treasury Secretary P B Jayasundara says the government hopes to have an LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) plant up and running by 2009, to compliment a 300 megawatte coal fired power project that is being built with Chinese help.
The South Asian Island, generates nearly 60 percent of electricity through expensive diesel fired thermal plants, with the balance coming from low cost hydro plants.
We hope to have an LNG plant in Kerawalapitiya by 2009, which will be built with Japanese government assistance, Jayasundara told a business forum here Saturday.
Cost of electricity generation now ranges between 10-12 rupees per unit, but the state power utility, the Ceylon Electricity Board sells a unit at an average price of about 9.00 rupees.
The government earlier announced plans to set up a 300 megawatte combined cycle plant in Kerawalapitiya, but energy analysts say the project has been delayed due to protracted wrangling within an opaque procurement process with Sri Lanka’s