Sri Lanka coal plant: Chinese designer says accusations unfair

Aug 22, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Chinese built coal plant which is breaking down repeatedly has been over-used without scheduled maintenance but had still saved billions of rupees to the power utility, its designer has said. Zhao Wenxue, from the Northwest Electric Design Institute which designed the plant said in a statement that most of the accusations leveled against the plant, built by China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) are unfair.

The plant had been well designed but had been operated from March 2011 without annual maintenance he pointed out.

“According to normal practice in China, a thermal plant should undergo a one month maintenance period annually,” Wenzue was quoted as saying in a statement.

“Only then can the unit be more reliable and efficient and expected to perform well.

“The lack of rain at the hydro catchment areas in Sri Lanka over the past several months posed a threat to the power generation around the island.

“The Norochcholai coal power plant was forced to work beyond its required limits and keep supplying electricity to the whole country.

“With the lack of rain and in an attempt to avoid burdening the public with power cuts the Ceylon Electricity Board ha