Sri Lanka hikes renewable energy tariffs by over 20-pct

Oct 15, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lanka has hiked purchase tariffs for most renewable energy fuels by over 20 percent with a flat 20-year rate for new mini-hydro plants built in 2013, up 28 percent amid steep currency depreciation, a tariff decision by the regulator showed. Sri Lanka’s Public Utilities Commission had used an exchange rate of 132.86 rupees to the US dollar convert the capital cost of new plants into rupees.

Sri Lanka’s exchange rate fell in the first and second quarter of 2012 after the rupee was floated to break a cycle of sterilized foreign exchange sales and has since started to strengthen.

The rupee had already strengthened to 128.50 levels in the spot market by October, when the tariff decision was published.

The flat tariff for new mini-hydro plants was raised 28.07 percent to 16.70 rupees a kilowatt (an electricity unit) while those with locally made components was given a rate of 17.15 rupees with a nationalist cost.

Wind power flat tariff was raised 6.12 percent to 20.63 rupees a unit and wind local was higher at 21.22 rupees with the nationalist cost.

The rate for biomass dendro (farmed firewood) was raised 21.21 percent to 25.09 rupees a unit and for biomass (agricultural waste) to 17.71 rupees.