Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Wind Power - A solution to the energy crises

2 Dec 2012

(Sri Lanka) The President while presenting the 2013 budget offered a basket of incentives for the renewable energy sector to attract both local and foreign investors to embark on this much neglected renewable energy sector that has not received the desired attention in its development drive for the last six decades.

He emphatically noted that promoting renewable energy is a key necessity to slash the heavy crude bill and the resultant foreign exchange savings would have a positive cushioning effect on the trade deficit. Hence, the granting of tax concessions through exemption of import taxes for solar, wind and bio mass power systems and other renewable energy equipment which could not be manufactured in the country backed by the slashing of corporate tax rates to concessionary 12% is viewed as a noteworthy incentive given for the development of wind farm projects in the right direction.

In this context it is heartening to note that a team of new investors who have had hands on experience in the construction of mega wind power plants in Europe are expected to meet government authorities this week, even before the dust of the second reading of the budget debate settles down in response to the budget proposals. These three experts-Micheal Huntings Ford, Peter Crone and Jens Dickmann who have been reportedly instrumental in setting up the world's largest off shore wind farms in Array and Bristol, UK, where there are generating 1,000 MW and 1.500 MW to the national grid of UK-, are expected to have a series of discussions with the Sri Lankan Government.

Undoubtedly, it is a herculean task for the government to convince them on the commercial viability of the off shore wind farm projects in Sri Lanka in the light of the tax concessions and other forms of incentives declared in the 2013 budget and secure their technical and financial support, as Sri Lanka is woefully lacking expertise and technology in this wind farm energy sector.

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