CPC threatens fuel cuts to SriLankan | Sunday Observer

CPC threatens fuel cuts to SriLankan

In the wake of the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation’s (CPC) decision to suspend its fuel supply to SriLankan Airlines in two months’ time, State Minister of Finance Eran Wickramaratne plans to hold immediate discussions with the CPC to find a solution to the issue.

“We have to understand that both are state owned entities (SOE). Therefore, both institutions can come up with a solution” the State Minister told the Sunday Observer yesterday.

The CPC announced last week, that it will supply fuel to the national carrier only for two more months if the airline failed to repay its debt to the CPC, to the tune of Rs 36 billion, as at today.

The Chairman of both, CPC and SriLankan Airlines, G.S. Vithanage said it is his duty to recover the debt owed by SriLankan to CPC. “Both institutions are loss making entities.

The CPC is running at a loss due to these overdue payments. Therefore, we have no option but to inform SriLankan Airlines of their debt,” Vithanage said.

Prior to being appointed as Chairman of both institutions, he served as the Secretary to the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation.

The State Minister said that the Finance Ministry is currently holding discussions with different stakeholders of the Airline on restructuring the loss making airline. “I am willing to meet trade unions and also Opposition MPs. However our first priority would be to restructure the airline” Wickramaratne explained.

Asked if he believes SriLankan Airline could be economically viable in the future, the State Minister said he cannot comment on that moot point as it was dependent on the variables. “But with a bigger strategy I can say that it would be possible” he said.