Rs. 15 b reduced from CEB 2011 budget

Thursday, 11 November 2010 00:44 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Total allocation Rs. 159 billion; reductions from electricity generation, distribution, maintenance and loan payments; 2010 loss tagged at Rs. 40 billion

The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) is being energised to slash costs for 2011 by Rs. 15 billion with strong reduction in power generation, maintenance, distribution and loan payments, to minimise drain on public finance.

Power and Energy Minister Champika Ranawaka during a meeting with the President on Tuesday evening had outlined ambitious plans to create a significant reduction in the allocation for the CEB. The State-Owned Enterprise (SOE) is well known for its excesses and the projected loss for 2010 is tagged at Rs. 40 billion. The expenditure reduction includes Rs. 3.3 billion from direct electricity generation expenses, Rs. 2.5 million from maintenance fees, Rs. 1.5 billion from loan payments and Rs. 1 billion from distribution. 

The Ministry in a media release pointed out that Ranawaka had expressed confidence to President Rajapaksa with regard to reducing the overall expenditure of CEB by Rs. 15 billion through introduction of a fresh management plan.

The CEB has been allocated Rs. 159 billion for 2011, but according to the statement this could be reduced under the new plan. Of the costs the highest of Rs. 107 billion is for electricity generation with Rs. 16,754 million for distribution, Rs. 7,700 million for generator maintenance and Rs. 3,997 for interest payments.

“After taking this expense into consideration, the Power and Energy Minister has created a new management plan that would optimise the use of national resources and ensure that they are properly monitored, thus reducing wastage and corruption,” the statement noted, adding that the top management of the CEB would be briefed about this new structure presently.

The officials would also be given a target to achieve during the next year, with the staff being moved to a performance-based pay package.

Following discussions with the CEB management, the Minister had managed to reduce the estimates presented by them and they had also agreed to slash the internal capital investment expenditure.