Experts to share ideas to fuel Sri Lanka’s energy hub vision

Monday, 24 February 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Daily FT-Colombo Uni MBA Alumni Association’s Five Hubs Forum tomorrow The Government’s vision of making Sri Lanka an energy hub remains ever challenging given the sector having to be contend with vagaries of the weather. This is because the heavy reliance on the hydro generation. In the past 10 years, the focus has shifted to increase generation from alternative sources of energy especially renewable. In recent times new sources such as coal has hit headlines given the breakdown of Norochcholai plant whilst exit of private sector players from thermal generation as well as plight of mini hydro firms are some of the issues the energy sector is grappling with. Adding a new dimension to the entire energy hub aspiration is the potential oil or gas exploration in the Mannar basin. With opportunities come challenges and how Sri Lanka will manage its way forward with regard to energy sector has caught industry as well policy maker’s attention. The energy sector is also a popular topic for reforms given the domination by two state entities – Ceylon Electricity Board and the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation. There has been good progress last year but the state entities have been urged to further improve. The role for private sector which has grown over the years in the energy sector still remain challenging too as it looks to a more consistent and supportive policy regime. Country’s overall quest to move towards a $ 100 billion economy and per capita income of over $ 4000 by 2016 will cast greater responsibility on the energy sector. Given the overarching importance of the energy sector as well as the Government’s aspiration to become an energy hub, the Daily FT and Colombo University MBA Alumni Association organised full day forum will endeavour to take up some of these issues tomorrow. Billed as the last session of the forum, the energy sector has an interesting panel. Main presenter will be the Petroleum Resources Development Secretariat Director General Saliya Wickramasuriya whilst the panel will include Deputy Secretary to the Treasury Dr. B.M.S. Batagoda, Aker Solutions, Vice President and Key Account Manager Harry Kulasinghe, Wind Force Ltd CEO Manjula Perera and Energy Forum Executive Director Asoka Abeygunawardane. A representative from the CEB is also scheduled to participate. The five hubs forum will be kicked off by Economic Development Minister Basil Rajapaksa at 8:30 a.m., and keynote will be by Central Bank Governor Nivard Cabraal whilst Special Guest P. Tewari Head, Competitive Industries Global Practice, The World Bank Group, Singapore will also make a presentation. For registration/tickets for the energy hub session or full day forum which also focuses on other hubs – maritime, aviation, commercial + tourism, and knowledge, please contact Shanthini on 0766869269. Tickets available at No. 26B, Retreat Road (adjoining Holy Family Convent), Bambalapitiya from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Email: