Still pending of approval by Cabinet, up to four foreign distributors will be allowed to operate the service stations of the state-owned Ceylon Petroleum Corp (CPC), according to the Minister of Energy, Kanchana Wijesekera. The official explained that they will ask the chosen ones to import fuel on credit, due to Sri Lanka’s difficulty in raising liquidity or increasing its foreign exchange reserves. Currently only CPC and the Sri Lankan subsidiary of the Indian Oil Corp are authorized to distribute fuel in this Asian island.
CPC union sources say no fuel shipments are expected in the short term, despite what the ministry has assured.
Sri Lanka has been facing its worst economic crisis for several months and is suffering shortages of essential goods, gasoline, medicines, as well as foreign exchange reserves, due to its indebtedness to the World Bank and wrong government policies.