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us Envoy keen on conclusion of New Fortress energy deal in SL

30 Jul 2021 - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}      

  • Says America hopes business deals are not made around corrupt practices  
  • Looks for conclusion of investment deal  

By Kelum Bandara  

U.S. Ambassador Alaina B. Teplitz, who commented on the proposed investment by the U.S. based New Fortress Energy (New Fortress”) in Sri Lanka’s energy sector, said she would argue for it as a crucial project for Sri Lanka needing capacity improvement and new technology in the related field.   

The company announced earlier that it signed a Framework Agreement with the Sri Lankan Government to construct a new offshore liquefied natural gas (LNG) receiving, storage and re-gasification terminal (the “Terminal”). The Terminal will be located off the coast of Colombo to supply gas to the country’s power plants located in the Kerawalapitiya Power Complex.  
Making her remarks during a round-table discussion with a team of journalists yesterday, she said it was a private investment, and the company would bring its own money, not a loan, to be put on the ground in Sri Lanka.   
The Ambassador expressed optimism that it could be completed.  
“We absolutely support having a fair, clear, consistent framework. We absolutely support ensuring that business deals are not made around corrupt practices. The importance of the investment is meeting the highest environmental, labour standards. That is something American companies bring to the table as well as innovation and good technology,” she said.  

She added that training and education of the workforce was important.   

The U.S. Ambassador also emphasised the need for Sri Lanka to work out a programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to revive the economic which, she said,  was in crisis. She said no other alternate method would provide foundational requirements for the economy to regain health to grow at accelerated pace. Therefore, she said an arrangement with the IMF would be the best solution .