Sri Lanka industries to get biggest subsidy after tariff hike

Sri Lanka's state minister of defence Ruwan Wijewardene (L) takes part in a press conference in Colombo on April 24, 2019. - A Sri Lankan security dragnet hunting those responsible for horrifying bombings that claimed more than 350 lives has scooped up a further 18 suspects, police said April 24, as pressure mounted on politicians to explain why no one acted on intelligence warnings. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP) (Photo credit should read ISHARA S. KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)

Apr 02, 2013 (LBO) – Industries will get an annual subsidy of nearly 15 billion rupees even after a tariff hike proposed from April, hotels will be marginally subsidized and customers classified as general purpose pay in excess of costs, an analysis by the regulator shows. A document prepared ahead of a public consultation scheduled for April 04 by the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka shows revenue from industries who were heavily subsidized already will go up to 69.9 billion from 64.9 billion rupees.

But industries would still get a subsidy of 14.7 billion rupees a year.

Customers classified as general purposes which are mostly businesses in the services sector would generate profits of 16.7 billion rupees for the Ceylon Electricity Board generating revenues of 60.1 billion rupees, and helping cross subsidize industries.

Industries have been a powerful lobby in getting power subsidies, though past tariff hikes.

Critics say some industrial customers asking for subsidies at the expense of the rest of the society include tariff protected ‘domestic production’ businesses that are already burdening the poor through high prices.

Others are more efficient export oriented industries catering to customers in rich countries.

The regulator has