New Delhi: A consignment of 40,000 Metric Tonnes (MT) of diesel from India has reached Sri Lanka on Saturday to help the nation mitigate its power crisis. Sri Lanka is facing a spike in power cuts due to an unprecedented economic and energy crisis born out of a shortage of foreign exchange. Recently, on March 31, the island nation recorded its longest power cut of 13 hours since 1996.
"More fuel supplies delivered by #India to #SriLanka! A consignment of 40,000 MT of diesel under #Indian assistance through Line of Credit of $500 mn was handed over by (the) High Commissioner to Hon'ble Energy Minister Gamini Lokuge in #Colombo today," the Indian High Commission tweeted.
"This is the fourth consignment under the LoC. Fuel delivered from #IndianWells to people of #SriLanka in (the) last 50 days is about 200,000T," the High Commission added.
After receiving the latest consignment of diesel from India, the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) said that it would help Sri Lanka in easing the ongoing power cuts. The power cuts effective Saturday are over 8.5 hours. The CEB also announced the resumption of power berating operations at Kerawalapitiya Thermal Power Plant after the receipt of supplies from LIOC, the Sri Lankan subsidiary of state-run Indian Oil Corporation (IOC). LIOC will supply 6,000 MT diesel to the Kerawalapitiya Thermal Power Plant.
India recently extended a US$1 billion line of credit to Sri Lanka as part of its financial assistance to the island nation for dealing with the energy and economic crisis. Earlier, India had extended a US$500 billion line of credit to Sri Lanka in February to purchase petroleum products.
Sri Lanka is currently reeling under its worst economic crisis in history. Long lines for fuel, cooking gas, short supply of essentials and long hours of power cuts have triggered public unrest in the island nation.