Sri Lanka has received $160 million from the World Bank and is considering using some of it to buy fuel, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe informed Parliament on May 18, as protests against persistent fuel and gas shortages caused by the economic crisis continued in the country.
World Bank has provided 160 million dollars
“The World Bank has provided 160 million dollars, and the Asian Development Bank is anticipated to provide a grant,” Mr. Wickremesinghe said. He stated that the World Bank funds could not be utilized to purchase fuel. “We’re looking into using part of it for fuel purchases.” “he remarked.
In his Monday speech to the nation, Mr. Wickremesinghe stated that two further petrol shipments under the Indian credit line were due this week and by May 29. His comments came as enraged protestors stopped multiple roads on Wednesday in a show of support for persistent fuel and gas shortages brought on by the economic crisis. Around every gas station, there were miles-long lines.
The energy minister, Kanchana Wijesekera, claimed there was no petrol in stock and that it would only be accessible at pumping stations by the weekend.
We don’t have enough fund
“We don’t have enough funds to get a gasoline cargo released, and we only have a small amount of petrol on hand for necessary services.” We apologize for the inconvenience. Please avoid standing in lines. Distribution will take another three days “Mr. Wijesekera informed the House. He stated that diesel supplies are sufficient.
Mr. Wijesekera said that $53 million for a January gasoline shipment had not been paid since the end of March. The monsoon rains, according to Mr. Wijesekera, have made it difficult to offload cooking gas.
Sri Lanka is experiencing its biggest economic crisis since its 1948 independence. Long lines for fuel, cooking gas, and other commodities have formed due to a catastrophic scarcity of foreign funds, while power outages and increasing food costs have added to the people’s misery.
The economic crisis prompted a political crisis in Sri Lanka, with demands for the strong Rajapaksas to quit.
In response to calls for his resignation, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa dissolved his Cabinet and replaced it with a younger one. For well over a month, a constant protest has been held in front of his secretariat.
Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa, Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s elder brother, resigned as prime minister on May 9 to allow the President to appoint an interim all-party cabinet. On Thursday, Mr. Wickremesinghe was named the country’s new Prime Minister.