March 14 (LBO) – Sri Lanka is to develop an oil exploration laws and establish a regulatory system with funding from the United States, the US embassy in Colombo said Wednesday. The Ministry of Petroleum and Petroleum Resources Development is getting a 51 million rupee grant from the US Trade and Development Agency to develop oil and gas regulatory system and establish a regulatory authority.
“Development of the offshore oil and gas sector could be an important opportunity for Sri Lanka to reduce energy imports, generate revenue and create jobs,” Ambassador Robert Blake said in a statement.
“The United States wants to help Sri Lanka maximize its potential gain from oil and gas exploration.
The embassy said grant will help Sri Lanka’s oil and gas regulations to move from a ‘consumer-driven to a production-oriented’ structure.
Sri Lanka has announced plans to auction oil and gas exploration blocks off the coast of the island and also award a block each on a non-competitive basis to India and China.
Sri Lanka is a net oil importer and the auctioning of exploration blocks was first announced more than four years ago.
“A well-developed regulatory st