Probe the huge profit margins CPC makes on imports, sales of fuel: PUCSL Head
Posted on July 7th, 2022

Chaturanga Samarawickrama Courtesy The Daily Mirror

The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) Chairman, Janaka Rathnayake, today urged the government to investigate the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) for making huge profit margins on fuel imports and sales.

While addressing the media, he said the revenue after importing and selling fuel not gone to the government or to the treasury but to the CPC where they had huge financial burdens.

The chairman referred to the CPC as a ‘dark hole’ and said the revenue after importing and selling fuel is sucked into the CPC and nobody sees anything. Even though the CPC is charging higher prices, they don’t have the funds to buy fuel.

However, there were two fuel price revisions during the last 45 days in May and June. 

Rathnayake said based on the fuel formula that came out through the Power and Energy Ministry, it had mentioned exorbitant prices on imports of all these fuel varieties into the country.

According to the latest revision, a barrel of octane 92 petrol was imported at US$157, octane 95 at US$158, diesel at US$174 per barrel, super diesel at US$176 per barrel and a barrel of kerosene at US$171, he said.

As per the information received from the Sri Lanka Customs Department (SLCD) a month ago, a barrel of kerosene was imported at US$105. A barrel of diesel was sold at US$ 111, a barrel of furnace oil was imported at US$ 75, and a barrel of petrol was imported at US$ 100.

However, according to the fuel formula which the CPC came up with, the price was almost US$50 per barrel, and they arrived at a huge cost figure. The CPC had determined the fuel price based on the latest fuel price revision. 

Moreover, the government is charging lesser than Rs.50 as taxation for the above fuel imports per litre. Therefore, the CPC is having that opportunity to making a huge amount as profits ranging from Rs.171 to around Rs. 258 per litre on this imports and selling fuel.

This is the plight of these large organisations where the financial disciplines are not in proper order, he said.

Therefore, the PUCSL chairman urged the political hierarchy, Ministries, Ministers or any interested parliamentarians, treasury, central Bank, local banks to look into the matter to ensure that whether the pricing is done properly. 

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