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Minister hits out at fuel supplier

16 August 2012 01:45 am - 17     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The Petroleum Industries Ministry yesterday rejected claims made by the controversial fuel supplier Vitol Ltd of Singapore and threatened legal action if the company failed to issue a corrected version.

Minister Premajayantha said he had never contacted Vitol Ltd or any of its representatives or approved the re-listing of the company last year after it supplied a stock of furnace oil in an emergency situation.

“The former Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) chairman had obtained board approval to re-list Vitol Ltd. with the proviso, ‘subject to the approval of the minister’. But I have never seen this board document nor did I give the approval to re-list this company,” Minister Premjayantha said.

He said the minister’s approval was not required to de-list or re-list a supplier and this was a matter for the CPC Board of Directors.

The minister said he would instruct the CPC to initiate legal action against Vitol Ltd., if it did not correct the information set out in a public notice published by the company.

He said Vitol’s notice claiming that the company paid US$150,000 to the CPC as a goodwill gesture to settle a dispute over the supply of a substandard consignment of 20,000 metric tonnes of furnace oil was incorrect.

An excerpt from the public notice appearing in the media states, “Last year a settlement of the dispute was negotiated with Vitol making a payment of US$150,000 to CPC. The suggestion that this was a fine or penalty is incorrect. The settlement was reached with the CPC with the approval of the Chairman of the CPC and the Minister of Petroleum Industries.”

But the minister, who disputed this claim, insisted that the payment of US$150,000 was compensation and not a goodwill payment.

The CPC sold the substandard stock of furnace oil supplied in 2009 to the industrial sector in separate quantities when several power stations had broken down after using the contaminated furnace oil, 7,000 metric tonnes of which remained unsold.

The minister said the payment of US$150,000 was to compensate for the 7,000 metric tonnes of furnace oil.

He revealed that a former top CPC official who had bought a stock of 4,000 litres of subsidized furnace oil for Rs.23.00 a litre for his thermal power plant sold the fuel for Rs.45.00 a litre when he found that the stock was contaminated and in the process made a huge profit.

“He should have returned the stock to the CPC because subsidised fuel is meant only for the state sector,” the minister said. (Sandun A. Jayasekera- Pix by Nisal Baduge)

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  Comments - 17

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  • Lobo Thursday, 16 August 2012 04:45 AM

    We all know whats been happening. This time someone got too greedy and diluted the good fuel with too much low quality fuel.

    gb Friday, 17 August 2012 08:39 AM

    grease-DJs blaming oil-DJs

    SJ Thursday, 16 August 2012 11:56 AM

    Keep passing blame to each other. Continue this two weeks.
    People will forget this. you are safe.

    Nodrog Thursday, 16 August 2012 07:06 AM

    Must be a record...don't see a single red mark for any comments made so far.

    SudhuPancha Thursday, 16 August 2012 07:03 AM

    The cat is out of the bag!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Ure a corrupt rogue as the others!!!!!!!

    Ravi Seneviratne Thursday, 16 August 2012 07:17 AM

    So, the public are the GOATS ? looks both hand are very clean ???????????????? , ops , my foot .

    Cyclops Thursday, 16 August 2012 02:15 AM

    Everybody is hitting out at the supplier. What about the rogues who saw fit to choose Vitol in order to fill their pockets and those top guns who let it pass?

    Calistus Jayatilleke Thursday, 16 August 2012 02:18 AM

    Wonder what is Weerawansa doing here: is he telling the media that this is also an "international conspiracy" against Sri Lanka.

    Gregory Thursday, 16 August 2012 08:45 AM

    If you are asking CPC to take legal action, please see that you are paying out of your own pocket and not out of our pockets. We all know how you all do legal battling. Lost Hedging case is the classic example. Please keep quiet. Please don't arrange to add insult over injury at the cost of the poor. Even if you spend out of your own pocket that too is our money you looted by importing dirty petrol.

    Gregory Thursday, 16 August 2012 08:46 AM

    It is a shameles admittance that the Minister was unaware of the Board Matters being the highest official in the Ministry. If the Ministry Board Member Sandhya Wijebandara does not tell you about the Board proceedings please ask her not to collect Rs 10,000 per every Board sitting and issue her a letter of show cause for neglecting her duty. We know that she is struggling hard at every board meeting of CPC as the Board Papers come in an alien language which she is not accustomed to.

    Alex Thursday, 16 August 2012 09:16 AM

    Minister may not be involved in any underhand financial transactions that have took place.

    But it seems that he dont have control over his own officials and hence he is not competent enough to handle this situation.

    Having understood this situation its better that the minister should select a less responsible ministry

    Banda Thursday, 16 August 2012 09:13 AM

    If any one employed in the oil Industry, they knows about Vitol/ Mansel Oil. This giant Oil distribution network is one of the presteigous and known for quality. Head office located in Netherland and I certainly know for their quality. I am sure petroleum Minister does not know the real cause for distribtion of low quality diesel by the CPC or he is trying to cover up some underhand dealing. If need I also can provide contact details of Vitol senior Management for any verification.

    ZScore Thursday, 16 August 2012 09:25 AM

    A US conspiracy together with the UN :-)

    Randunna Friday, 17 August 2012 05:54 AM

    Instead of passing the blame please Pig your supply lines from the Port to the tanks. Clean all your storage tanks and get rid of the sludge and then start pumping the new oil deliveries.
    Thereafter if you still find any contamination then place the blame with the suppliers. You are loosing not only money but also the consumer confidence.

    Manike Thursday, 16 August 2012 03:50 AM

    Hon Minister take legal action and prove that you are not involved in inferior quality Diesel. other wise people think you are responsible for contaminated diesel as there was earlier incident with law quality petrol distributed by CPC..

    Sweat Thursday, 16 August 2012 09:51 AM

    Inferier quality minsiters use infereior quality products with only quality pockets holding USD 150,000 in cash.

    buffaloa citizen Thursday, 16 August 2012 04:10 AM

    Minister is trying to deviate the crux of the problem which is inferior substandard fuel. How can you explain repeated importation of inferior substandard fuel when the supplier has sent you samples, you have tested samples and test certificates certifying the correct composition of the fuel is issued? Are you and your henchmen mixing and adulterating the good fuel with some other low quality fuel purchased earlier inside CPC and distributing?


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