The Sri Lanka government is calling for tenders to build 90 Solar Power Plants with a capacity of 1 MW each, Power, Energy and Business Development Minister Ravi Karunanayake has announced. The Minister disclosed that already 76 projects have been awarded with procurement approval under this program.
The Minister made this disclosure in Parliament last week in reply to a question raised by UNP MP Thushara Indunil. Karunanayake questioned as to why there was no standardization applied to imports of solar panels.
Minister Karunanayake said: “There are many issues relating to solar power generation. However, we shall promote renewable energy as much as possible.”
“We will give permission to anyone who is ready to bring us 5 MW or more. Solar panels are imported from countries such as China and EU. The reason why we have not introduced specific standardization to solar panels is because if we do so, some businessmen may accuse us of favoring one country over the other. So we have given the consumers the power to choose their preferred equipment. This is more or less why we have not implemented an official standardization,” he explained.
Observing that there had been many delays in the tender procedure, the Minister said that some large scale investors, who have responded to tender calls, have not continued the process.
“This action has blocked the attraction of many small scale investors. We are trying our best to encourage small or medium scale investors for these projects,” he pointed out.
In reply to a question raised by UNP MP Professor Ashu Marasinghe, Minister Karunanayake pointed out that some companies were trying to obstruct the “Roof Top” solar power program.