Sri Lanka warns of higher oil prices and urges to consume fuel economically

Feb 19, Colombo: As gasoline and crude oil prices continue to surge and set records due to the unrest in oil-producing Middle East and the West’s embargo on Iranian oil that is to take effect in July, Sri Lanka warns the public of higher oil prices in the future and urges to consume fuel economically.

Emphasizing the importance of using fuel economically, the Secretary to the Ministry of Petroleum Industry Dr. R.H.S. Samaratunge warns the public to expect higher global oil prices in the days ahead.

Crude oil prices rose further on Sunday with WTI crude up by 0.79 percent to US$ 104.06 a barrel and Brent crude up by 0.07% to US $119.67 a barrel.

Dr. Samaratunge has explained that Sri Lanka has to spend US$ 40-50 million to import a vessel consignment of fuel to the country and Sri Lanka import that 70 to 80 such consignments annually.

Last year the country has spent US$ 4 billion to import fuel and this year the country has to import even more to meet the demand possibly touching US$ 5 billion mark, the Secretary has told the state-run radio SLBC.

While the fuel prices are rising in the world market, the amount of fuel being imported by the country has also increased due to the demand placed by vehicles imports to the country which has surged 100 percent in 2011 registering 525,421 new vehicles, the Secretary has pointed out.

Dr. Samaratunge has stressed the need therefore, for everyone in the country to use fuel economically.

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