The Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) has denied reports that the Sapugaskanda oil refinery was to be sold to the private sector. Speaking to The Nation, a CPC spokesperson said it was a false rumor spread by the trade unions to mislead the public and tarnish the good image of the corporation. “CPC or the government has no intention of selling the Sapugaskanda refinery to the private sector, he emphasized.
He further said neither the government nor the CPC were responsible for the recent oil shortage that occurred at the Sapugaskanda refinery. “Our suppliers were unable to purchase crude oil from Iran due to the economic sanctions imposed by USA. It was something beyond our control,” he stressed. “We took immediate action to purchase oil from other countries as a solution. There will be no shortages,” he assured.
Two ships carrying 70,000 and 80,000 metric tons of crude oil arrived in Sri Lanka from Dubai on November 5 and 7 respectively, and the oil from these ships is already in the refining process, he claimed. “Another ship carrying 135,000 metric tons of crude oil purchased from Saudi Aramco is also in the Colombo port,” he stated. “It will also be pumped to the Sapugaskanda refinery soon. We request the public not to be misled by these rumours,” he appealed.