Electricity at Rs. 14 per unit not possible – CEB Engineers

Ceylon Electricity Board senior engineers reject a recent claim by West Coast Project Managing Director U. D. Jayawardena that the Kerawalapitiya combined cycle power plant to be commissioned could provide electricity costing Rs. 14 per unit from the first week of December.

"If a unit of electricity is to be supplied at Rs. 14, the new plant has to be able to purchase a litre of furnace oil at Rs. 34 or less," a senior engineer said.

He said as per their invoice received for energy charges up to November 1, the Kerawalapitiya plant had claimed Rs. 636 million. They have generated 21 GWh. According to this invoice, the unit cost is Rs. 30/kWh -fuel cost only," he said.

He also said that the Kerawalapitiya power plant was using a special type of furnace fuel and the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation had imported a large stock of it for the exclusive use at the Kerawalapitiya plant.

He added: "The price as per their last invoice is Rs. 88 a litre. That price will not change until they consume the whole consignment. At that rate, a unit from WCP will cost Rs. 32 kWh - fuel plus other variable costs."

However, he said prices in the world market were certainly coming down.

The latest furnace oil price was Rs. 51 per litre, another CEB official said. He said even if WCP was given fuel at that price, their unit cost price will be Rs. 19.90.

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