SL looking to become 100% dependent on renewable energy by 2030


by Sanath Nanayakkare

SAARC Energy Regulators pose for a photgraph at the Hilton, Colombo on Monday

The power and energy sector of Sri Lanka is looking forward to an energy self-sufficient nation by 2030.We are looking to increase the share of electricity generation from renewable energy sources from 50 percent in 2014 to 60 percent by 2020, and finally hope to meet the total demand from renewable and other indigenous energy resources by 2030, M.I.M. Rafeek, Secretary to the Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs said in Colombo on Monday.

The Secretary made this comment at the 2nd meeting of SAARC Energy Regulators at the Hilton, Colombo where high commissioners and representative officials from the High Commissions of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal and Maldives took part in.

The alliance of Energy Regulators of SAARC countries underline the need for strengthening the cooperation for accelerated economic growth and improving the quality of the life of the people of South Asia..

Participants at the forum also represented Energy Regulatory Bodies of SAARC countries, officials from South Asia Regional initiatives for SAARC countries, officials from South Asia Regional Initiatives for Energy Integration (SARI/IE), Asian Development Bank, Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy and Petroleum Resources Development, Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) and a number of other government bodies.

Speaking further the Secretary said, "It's encouraging to see increasing corporation among our countries because our internal partnership will help overcome our core issues such as sustainable energy production and distribution. Nowhere in the world are collective efforts more urgent than in South Asia and nowhere else is it so modest".

"SAARC member countries are burdened with the serious challenge of improving the quality of life of people. Electricity is shown as one of the lowest per capita consumption utility. It is the responsibility of the Energy Regulators to explore the avenues of overcoming these situations".

"Big or small, we face the same challenges in our long journey towards wider development and we need to work in unison to achieve that. That was the vision and aspiration that brought us together as SAARC 30 years ago. We have an agreement, an institution or a frame work of corporation in every field".

"India and Bangladesh have deepened their links through rail, road, power and transit. India and Nepal have started a new era of cooperation in their energy sector and India and Bhutan are making those ties stronger by the day. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka and India are keen to boost trade through a Free Trade Agreement".

"Infrastructure is our regions greatest weakness and it's the most pressing need and one common challenge to all counties in our region. The electricity corporation in the region includes sharing of cross border infrastructure, regional power production, encouraging and enhancing fair competition across regional markets'.

"Formulation of the SAARC Energy Regulators forum is a backdrop of SAARC frame work agreement for energy capacity as SAARC is going to create a Market of Electricity. We also observe a growing corporation; especially in the area of energy and gradually concreting its shape. It's important that all governments should provide great support to the market players in energy sector and the regulators can play a vital and significant role in this scenario".

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