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Minister Wanniarachchi vice chair of Asian and Pacific Energy Forum in Russia:

SL on target of reaching 100 pc access to power

We take pride in the fact that we are well on the way of achieving 100 per cent access to electricity by the end of this year and we have been able to manage our power system without any power cuts which is an exemplary achievement, Power and Energy Minister Pavitra Wanniarchchi said.

Wanniarchchi was addressing First Asian and Pacific Energy Forum 2013 in Vladivostok, Russia.


‘Asian and Pacific Energy Forum 2013’ chairmen Energy Minister of the Russian Federation, Alexander Novak and Vice chair, Sri Lankan Power and Energy Minister Pavithra Wannaiarachchi.

A Sri Lankan delegation led by Power and Energy Minister Pavitra Wanniarchchi, and senior officials of the ministry has participated at the First Asian and Pacific Energy Forum 2013 during May 27-30 in Vladivostok, Russian Federation. The Forum was a landmark event conducted under the auspices of the United Nations and its Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). Sri Lanka was elected as a Vice Chair of the Forum.

Excerpts from the speech:

“Let me first convey the warm wishes and heartiest gratitude from Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa to the Russian Federation President, Energy Minister of the Russian Federation Alexander Novak, and the people of the Russian Federation for the decision made by your government for hosting the APEF2013 in this beautiful city of Vladivostok and the hospitality extended to all of us by you and the government of the Russian Federation.

And also allow me at the outset to congratulate you, Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation Alexander Novak on your election to this prestigious position. We thank you for the timely initiative taken to address the issues of regional energy security and sustainable use of energy.

“Sri Lanka is a small island nation with a population of mere 20 million surrounded by the Indian Ocean and strategically located with close proximity to international navigational route connecting West Asia and East Asia. Sri Lanka’s closest neighbour is India and also closer to the South Pacific countries on the west. Sri Lanka is one of the founding members of the Non-Aligned Movement and always acted as a strong and active member while maintaining non-aligned principles.

“Our country is now a very peaceful country after the elimination of brutal separatist terrorism which has resulted a nearly three decades of unrest and well on its way towards becoming one of the emerging economies in Asia. We as a nation is very much grateful to the government and the people of the Russian Federation for their unstinted support extended to our country during the difficult times and both countries share a historical relationship of mutual understanding and respect for each other on equal basis and enjoy a strong economic partnership on equal footing.

“We take pride in the fact that we are well on the way of achieving 100 per cent access to electricity by the end of this year and we have been able to manage our power system without any power cuts which is an exemplary achievement. However, the cost of producing electricity has significantly increased along with the greater dependence on fossil fuels. As a country that does not produce petroleum this has been a particular weight on our economy.”

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