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Fuel price hike in the offing says UNP

The government, having admitted that the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation has suffered a huge loss, has set the stage for a hike in fuel prices, the UNP said yesterday.

Media spokesman of the UNP Gayantha Karunathillake, addressing a news conference in Colombo, said it was only recently that LIOC was permitted to increase fuel prices and an assessment of statements made by Petroleum Resources Development Minister Susil Premajayanth, was a clear indication that the consumer would be asked to pay more.

A litre of petrol costs Rs. 81, but the CPC retails it for between Rs. 125 and Rs. 130, which was big margin in comparisson to the rising cost of living, he said.

Karunathillake said that the recent detection of low quality fuel in the market had revealed the extent to which the authorities were not only cheating the consumer, but also causing health hazards.

Public servants can expect an all round increase in the prices of essential goods and services, but would not be given the promised Rs. 2,500 salary hike, he predicted.

The last UNP government commenced feasibility studies on a US$ 800 million oil refinery with a production capacity of 100,000 barrels per day, but with the advent of a SLFP led regime the project was abandoned, Karunathillake said adding that there would have been a big saving, if it had been continued.

The Rajapaksa regime, he said had made a big song and dance about establishing a new oil refinery in Sapugaskanda in 2008, but three years on the project was still to get off the ground.


Posted on Tuesday, June 28, 2011 @ 02:22:52 LKT


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