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Minister: Sri Lanka struggling to pay for fuel transportation

Sri Lanka is struggling to raise $ 587 million to pay for about five dozen fuel shipments, the Prime Minister said on Sunday. He said the shortage country is trying to deal with the worst. Decades of financial crisis.

A country of 22 million cannot pay for important imports of food, fertilizers, medicines and fuels due to the serious dollar crisis.

Power and Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said new fuels are planned to be shipped, but the central bank can only supply about $ 125 million, which is enough for the country to pay. I'm having a hard time raising enough money.

Sri Lanka's government stockpile has only 12,774 tonnes of diesel and 4,061 tonnes of gasoline left, he told reporters in Colombo, the commercial center of the island nation.

"We need $ 316 million to pay for new shipments this week. Adding two crude oil shipments, this amount can be up to $ 587 million," Wijesekera said. I am saying.

The first shipment of 40,000 tonnes of diesel from Coral Energy is expected to arrive around July 9, with a partial $ 49 million shipment from the second shipment from Bittle by Thursday. You need to make a good payment.

Last week, Sri Lanka closed schools, asked civil servants to work from home, and restricted government fueling to essential services due to severe diesel and petrol inventories. ..

Minister said the country needs to raise money from the open market and seek more flexible payment options from its suppliers.

He said plans were being discussed to settle $ 800 million to pay seven suppliers for the purchases made this year.

International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials continue talks with Sri Lanka on the possibility of a $ 3 billion bailout package, global lenders conclude their 10-day visit to Colombo last week. Said that.

However, the immediate release of funds from the IMF is unlikely, as the country must first move its debt on a sustainable path.