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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2857

Lanka Indian Oil fuel pumps to run dry in 12 days: Ceypetco assures uninterrupted fuel supply

By Ashwin Hemmathagama - Asian Tribune Financial Correspondent

Colombo, 26 May, ( Blue-chip fuel retailer Lanka Indian Oil Company Ltd. (LIOC) yesterday warned that its petrol stocks would end up by the first week of June, followed by the diesel stock which is sufficient for 42 days.

LIOC Managing Director K. Ramakrishnan told the “Asian Tribune” that 162 filling stations scattered through-out the country would experience this shortage unless the immediate settlements are made.

“We have nothing else to do but to wind-up the operations until the government settles its debt. It is very sad the way Sri Lanka Government is treating a multinational. The company will remain, and it will not be closed down but the petrol sheds will not have any LIOC products to sell,” he said.

However, State-run Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (Ceypetco) Chairman Jaliya Medagama assuring uninterrupted fuel supplies said: “Ceypetco has approximately 700 service outlets where 600 of them are dealer establishment. All these filling stations would be capable of handling the demand in the absence of LIOC supplies.”

However, the government which is absorbing the shock of increasing oil prices to keep the cost of living down owes LIOC Rs. 7.67 billion as of April this year. According to industry sources, the government does not have enough cash available to repay the subsidy in one chunk and is looking at the possibility in issuing US $ 25 million worth of foreign bonds.

Currently LIOC has 32 per cent market share in the retail fuel segment and 16 per cent and in the lubricant market. Sri Lanka refines 3.6 million metric tones annually with users guzzling around 30 million liters of petrol, 130 million liters of diesel and 18 million liters of kerosene each month.

- Asian Tribune -

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