Sri Lanka PM doesn’t agree LIOC responsible for fuel crisis, says two oil shipments arriving within two days

PM Ranil Wickremesinghe

PM Ranil Wickremesinghe

Sri Lanka Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe said he doesn’t agree that Lanka IOC is responsible for the current fuel shortage in the country and said two oil shipments are arriving in the country within two days.

Apart from petrol shipment arriving on 8th November, another shipment is due from India on 9th November, Prime Minister Wickremesinghe informed the parliament Tuesday responding to a question raised in the parliament regarding the fuel crisis.

The Prime Minister said a discussion was held with the Indian High Commissioner in this regard and the Indian ship would arrive on the N9th or 10th November.

Expressing his views further, the Premier said in future, steps will be taken to improve the fuel storage tanks and establish a center of storage tanks.

The Premier recalled that the government in 2003 held discussions with India to improve fuel storage but the idea didn’t get off as the government changed. Then again this government had discussions with India in 2015 to develop the oil storage and decided to work together with India on an agreement.

He noted that the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation has a huge debt and the government has requested the assistance from China to build another refinery in Hambantota.

The Premier pointing out that the LIOC fulfilled the fuel need when there was a strike by the CPC workers, said he does not agree with the allegation that LIOC was responsible for the fuel crisis.

The LIOC in a statement refuting the allegation said the Indian Oil company caters to only 16 percent of the public and the remaining 84 percent is served by the CPC.

The Prime Minister said an investigation would be launched into the shipment of the substandard fuel and assured that there is sufficient fuel until the tankers arrive later this week.