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The Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) is estimated to have faced a revenue loss of at least Rs. 600 million owing to the islandwide power outage on March 13 and subsequent power cuts in several parts of the country last week.

The estimate is calculated according to the tariff methodology formula of the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL). This amount is said to involve only the direct losses incurred by the CEB owing to power disruption.

Accordingly, the average daily revenue of the CEB is estimated to be in the range of Rs. 550 to 600 million. Accordingly, the revenue losses on the day of the islandwide power outage would add up to at least Rs. 180 million. The PUCSL has a formula which would ascertain the revenue losses that would have been incurred due to power that was not distributed. Accordingly, the formula takes into consideration the energy volumes distributed and the average unit rate when making the calculations.

After the islandwide blackout on March 13, the Government imposed a seven and a half-hour power cut, in two segments, in several parts of the country due to the problems faced in the Norochcholai plant. However, the Government claimed that power was completely restored and that the plant was functioning. Senior Lecturer at the Department of Electrical Engineering of the University of Moratuwa, Dr. Asanka Rodrigo meanwhile urged the Government to reveal the reasons behind the power outage to the people.

March 13 was the third instance in six months where the entire country faced a power outage for several hours. The first blackout was reported in September 2015 while the second power outage was experienced on February 25. “The people do not know what caused the power failures in both these instances. The officials need to be transparent and should act with responsibility,” Dr. Rodrigo said.