Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Indian factor dominates Sri Lanka renewable energy sector.

By: Staff Writer

March 23, Colombo (LNW): India showcased its achievements in renewable energy, including the ambitious National Green Hydrogen Mission. Sri Lanka, aiming for 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, presented lucrative opportunities for Indian firms.

In response to Sri Lanka’s request, India pledged technical assistance and training programmes in solar, wind, biomass, and grid connection. Talks with Sri Lanka’s Power & Energy Minister highlighted a shared vision for advancing cooperation.

Minister of Power and Energy, Kanchana Wijesekera, shed light on Sri Lanka’s strategic approach towards enhancing its energy landscape through collaboration with India and other regional partners, emphasizing the significance of interconnectivity and the potential for renewable energy integration.

Speaking on the proposed interconnectivity with India and development partners, Minister Wijesekera underscored the importance of establishing connectivity not only with India but also with other BIMSTEC (Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation) countries

A separate business event facilitated discussions between industry leaders, solidifying the foundation for future ventures. However, concerns still need to be addressed regarding transparency and local control in specific projects.

Both nations acknowledge the importance of transparency in harnessing clean energy. President Wickremesinghe’s support for India-Sri Lanka power grid connectivity reflects this shared vision.

Leading Indian companies like Adani Green are investing heavily, with a $750 million commitment to solar and wind projects. Plans for a regional transmission corridor further demonstrate India’s dedication to energy integration.

Furthermore, India’s upcoming LNG supply and support for an offshore regasification terminal cement its commitment to Sri Lanka’s energy diversification and long-term needs. This collaboration sets up both nations for a brighter, cleaner energy future.

Highlighting the regional implications of such partnerships, he stressed that these connections would enable Sri Lanka to leverage its excess renewable energy potential effectively.

While acknowledging the immediate benefits of importing power to address Sri Lanka’s energy needs, Minister Wijesekera outlined a broader vision for the future.

He articulated that as investments pour in and infrastructure develops, Sri Lanka aims to transition from a net importer to an exporter of renewable energy, thereby achieving energy independence.

Dispelling misconceptions about the affordability of renewable energy, Minister Wijesekera cautioned against underestimating the investment required for its integration.

He revealed that Sri Lanka anticipates needing a substantial investment of approximately $7 billion over the next six years (2024-2030) to bolster its infrastructure, particularly in transmission lines and grid development, to accommodate renewable energy requirements.

Acknowledging the fiscal constraints faced by the government, Minister Wijesekera emphasized the indispensable role of private investment in financing the necessary infrastructure development.

He underscored that while the government cannot solely bear the burden of such a significant investment, private sector involvement is crucial to realizing Sri Lanka’s renewable energy ambitions.

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