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Sri Lanka in talks with Oman to purchase fuel

Sat, Mar 31, 2012, 09:53 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Mar 31, Colombo: A Sri Lankan delegation is scheduled to leave for Oman Saturday for another round of talks to purchase fuel from the oil-rich nation in future.

As the June 28th deadline for the U.S. imposed-sanctions on Iran to take effect is approaching, Sri Lanka is taking measures to ease dependence on Iranian oil and looking towards other Gulf nations to purchase oil.

Sri Lanka depends almost entirely on Iran for its crude oil supplies and the country's only refinery at Sapugaskanda that processes 50,000 barrels per day can only process Iranian crude.

Secretary to the Ministry of Petroleum industries Dr. R.H.S. Samaratunge has said that the government has reached a memorandum of understanding with the Omani State Fuel Company to obtain fuel required by the country.

The government has also reached an agreement with Qatar to purchase refinery oil necessary for the Sapugaskanda Oil Refinery and refined fuel products.

According to the Secretary Samaratunge, Sri Lanka is also considering to purchase fuel from Saudi Arabia and Vietnam as well.

The U.S. sanctions are set to take effect on June 28. A European oil embargo, approved in January, starts in July.