In 2011 Sri Lanka has imported 362,682 tonnes of coal up to October after the coal plant started operations in July minister Ranawaka had told parliament, according to a transcript of parliamentary proceedings.
He was responding to questions of legislator Dayasiri Jayasekera who questioned the the award of the coal supply contract to a second trading firm after cancelling the deal with the first chosen firm.
Coal procurements are made by Lanka Coal (Pvt) Ltd, one of many state firms started since the early 2000 under Sri Lanka's company law dealing with private firms, without an Act of parliament.
Minister Ranawaka told parliament that the tender to supply coal was first awarded to Holcim Trading (Pvt) Ltd, but following an appeal the cabinet of ministers had awarded it to Nobel Resources (Pvt) Ltd.
Holcim had bid 58.763 million US dollars and Nobel Resources 58.736 million US dollars to supply 325,839 tonnes.The firm had supplied 362,682 tonnes in the period.
Jayasekera then said Holcim's bid was higher as the firm was to deliver coal right up to a jetty including barge operations while the power firm had to bear the cost of the final section in according to the terms of the second bid.
Minister Ranawaka replied that Lanka Coal had already bought a barge and its operation was given to Ceylon Shipping Corporation a state-run firm, which was known.
But in subsequent tenders for coal the cost of barge operations would be included, he had told parliament.