Proposed LNG plants – will we gradually lose our rights in it?

Proposed LNG plants – will we gradually lose our rights in it?

Proposed LNG plants – will we gradually lose our rights in it?

Written by Lahiru Fernando

30 Apr, 2017 | 10:42 pm

Liquefied Natural Gas – The Sri Lankan government’s plan for the primary source of energy of Sri Lanka. But…; will we gradually lose our rights in this sector?

Proposals have been made to construct two LNG power plants in Sampur with India and Japan, instead of a coal fired power plant. The government has also called for bids to construct a 300 megawatt combined cycle power plant in Kerawalapitiya.

As the investors have been informed, the power plant has to function on diesel fuel for the first three years, later being converted to use Natural Gas. The government is set to undertake supplying the LNG and a separate modality will be worked out for the task.

According to what min. Chandima Weerakkody said on a prior occasion, a cabinet paper had been submitted to carry out the necessary work to import natural gas, store and distribute it.

However, while all this is going on, an MoU -which deals with several matters concerning the use of LNG in Sri Lanka- has been signed during Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s recent bilateral meeting with the Indian Prime Minister.

The signed MoU was published in newspapers today and as it reads, both government’s have agreed to complete joint projects in Sri Lanka including;

  • A re-gasified Liquefied Natural Gas fired 500 Megawatt power plant
  • An LNG terminal and Floating Storage Re-gasification Unit
  • A piped gas distribution system
  • Retail outlets for supplying compressed natural gas to the transportation sector
  • The conversion of liquid fuel based power plants to R-LNG fired power plants

The modalities for these projects are to be worked out between the two governments at the earliest, as per the MoU.

The refinery

The CPC branch’s Jathika Sewaka Sangamaya has questioned the the means of acquiring funds to build LNG plants while CEYPETCO has been unable to repair the refinery due to the lack of funds.

The JSS President Ananda Palitha says that the same problem persists at present and pointed out that renovating the refinery is “a serious need”.

“What are the agreements? Is there permanent ownership? If ownership will revert to us after several years, how much are we to invest? What are the dividends the investors will receive? These matters must be placed before the trade unions and the country, very clearly.” said Ananda Palitha, regarding the proposed LNG plants.

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