Minister discusses power and energy sector reforms with IMF, World Bank officials

Minister of Power & Energy Kanchana Wijesekera on Thursday (Sept. 21) held constructive discussions with the officials of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank with regard to reforms in the energy and power sectors.

The meeting with IMF officials, which took place at the Presidential Secretariat, focused on the progress of reforms and cost-reflective pricing mechanisms implemented in the electricity and energy sectors. Additionally, attention was also paid to the progress of the “Aswesuma” welfare benefits program and economic reforms implemented by the Sri Lankan government.

IMF officials led by Senior Mission Chief, Peter Breuer; Chief of Presidential Staff Sagala Ratnayke; State Minister of Finance Shehan Semasinghe; Governor of the Central Bank Dr. Nandalal Weerasinghe; Secretary to the Ministry of Finance Mahinda Siriwardana and officials from the President’s Office and Ministry of Finance participated in the discussion.

The IMF team is in Sri Lanka from September 14 - 27 for the first review of the Extended Fund Facility (EFF) program for Sri Lanka to help ride out the economic crisis.

Meanwhile, the World Bank team assisting the reforms of the electricity sector has visited the Ministry of Power and Energy.

The World Bank has been assisting the proposed Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) reforms with technical assistance in analyzing the financial positions of the CEB, transfer plans and legal frameworks.

The two sides have discussed the possibility of implementing a communication platform on reforms, competitive bidding structures for renewable energy, and technical and financial assistance for energy efficiency.