The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) is established under the provisions of the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka Act No. 35 of 2002, to regulate the physical infrastructure sectors. It was be empowered to execute regulation only when the individual industry legislations are enacted and made effective. At present, the electricity, water service and petroleum industries are listed in the PUCSL Act. The mission statement of PUCSL is to regulate all the utilities within the purview of the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka, to ensure safe, reliable and reasonably priced infrastructure services for existing as well as future consumers in the most equitable and sustainable manner. The administration of the provisions of the Sri Lanka Electricity Act, No. 20 of 2009 as amended vests with the PUCSL. The Electricity Act states the functions of the PUCSL in detail, and includes specifically advising the Government on all matters concerning the generation, transmission, distribution, supply and use of electricity in Sri Lanka. In addition National Energy Policy & Strategies Of Sri Lanka of 2008 recognizes the role of PUCSL in regulating the energy sector, including electricity and petroleum sub-sectors, to ensure effective implementation of the pricing policy. As part of discharging its functions, on June 2015 PUCSL called for Expressions of Interest for individuals or firms to “Study on Impact of Tariffs and Formulation of Advice to the Government on the Use of Electricity in Sri Lanka”. A Request for Proposal was then issued in January 2016 to the short-listed firms. LIRNEasia (i.e. the “consultant”) was selected through this process to carry out a study to update the status regarding the use of electricity in Sri Lanka in relation to planned policy outputs and outcomes and also to identify target groups of consumers that deserve special consideration owing to social needs or commercial realities. The specific objectives of the projects are three fold:

  1. Update the status regarding the use of electricity in Sri Lanka in relation to planned policy outputs and outcomes
  2. Assess the impact of electricity tariffs (both tariff levels and tariff adjustments over the period 2011-2015) in delivering such outputs and outcomes; an
  3. Advise the Government on the use of electricity in Sri Lanka in relation to general policy guidelines.

The client, PUCSL, then defines a series of activities that need to be completed in order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives:

  • Establish a framework of indicators to assess the progress against policy outputs and outcomes in regard to the use of electricity, specifically with a view to reviewing progress between 2011 -2015 and formulate targets for 2020;
  • Assess the impact of electricity tariff in delivering on planned policy outputs and outcomes over the period 2011-2015, taking into consideration,
    • whether basic electricity requirements of the population (consumer category and sub-category wise as appropriate) have been adequately and continually met, and
      • if not, to what extent they have not been met, why they have not been met as well as the impact of the tariffs (connection and supply) on the same, and
      • if yes, to what extent tariff levels have enabled them to enhance their living standards and provided opportunities for gainful economic activity.
    • the impact of tariff on the national economy, including
      • in relation to other relevant legislation and policies relating to national strategies and targets for sustainable economic growth and examine the impact on development policy outcomes;
      • in relation to the nature and pattern of economic activity of households and industries.
    • Project the desired 2020 energy scenario to address gaps and shortfalls in the     achievement of planned policy outputs and outcomes and the desired electricity-use levels (demand) and the required system expansion (supply);
    • Formulate a tariff/pricing policy in respect of the supply of electricity to achieve desired electricity use levels;
    • Identify “disadvantaged groups of consumers” by specifying the threshold level of individual household income for the provision of life-line tariffs;
    • Formulate a set of recommendations for consideration and action by the Commission to advise the Government on the use of electricity.; and
    • In carrying out the analytical tasks in respect of item (c), (d), (e) and (f) above, take into account of updated National Energy Policy & Strategies of Sri Lanka (2015-2020), or if not final at that stage of the study, the possible directions of the review.


  • LIRNEasia at “ICT in Rural Development” Conference organized by Indonesia ICT Ministry

    The 2nd International Conference on ICT for Rural Development (IC-ICT RuDev) by the Centre of Research and Development on Informatics Applications and Public Communication, Ministry of Communication and Informatics of the Republic of Indonesia will be held in Jakarta during 27th -28th  October 2021.

  • BRIEF: Lack of property rights prevents access to electricity
  • BRIEF: Lack of efficient use of electricity
  • BRIEF: Addressing consumer complaints
  • REPORT: CRM practices in the electricity distribution sector in Sri Lanka: Supply side perspective on improving customer service delivery

    The past decade has seen unprecedented, rapid growth in electronic connectivity in the form of voice in the developing world. Access to the Internet and to more-than-voice services is quite uneven with those at the BOP being excluded from the benefits of the rich potential of applications and services associated with the Internet. The report is a part of LIRNEasia’s research into the exploration of how to bring about an increase the inclusivity of the currently marginalized BOP by providing more useful services and applications on mobile platforms. In terms of providing useful services, the research will focus on three sectors; telecom, electricity and government services. How can these services be more useful to particularly to the micro-entrepreneurs at the Bottom of the Pyramid? The key is in how the suppliers of these services manage their consumer relationships. Despite its growing subscriber base, the mobile operators have managed to maintained customer relations to a high standard without substantial increases in service personnel and costs. Can some of the learnings and best practices from the mobile sector be adopted be transferred to the electricity sector? In order to answer this question, LIRNEasia will study the current customer service relationship management (CRM) […]

  • REPORT: Methodology note on low-income, urban micro-entrepreneurs: Quantitative survey

    The survey was conducted among the low-income, urban micro-entrepreneurs (MEs) in three countries, Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka. The study defined micro-entrepreneurs as those who employed less than ten hired workers, i.e 0-9. The hired workers are paid employees or full-time equivalent, excluding the owner. This is an adaptation of international definition followed by World Bank and European Commission1. Low-income or the poor is identified as those who occupy C, D & E levels in the socioeconomic category (SEC) classification in Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. It was SEC D & E levels in India. Please see Annexure 1 for the SEC classification in three countries. In all the three countries, only cities or urban localities as defined by the respective national governments were selected for the study. The owners of the microenterprise who are older than 14 were included in the study. There were small changes made in the study during the middle of fieldwork, as we were not able to find the desired number of MEs in the certain worker categories. In Bangladesh, SEC B1 and B2 were included to cover the MEs in 1-3 and 4-9 worker categories. In India, SEC B2 was added to achieve the quotas […]

  • REPORT: CRM practices in the electricity distribution Sector in Bangladesh: Supply side perspectives on improving customer service delivery

    EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The report broadly explores the customer relationship management (CRM) practices in the electricity distribution sector in Bangladesh. It identifies some of the existing challenges and how these can be improved with the use of ICTs and better service design. In a country where less than half the population has access to electricity through 13.5 million connections to the grid, the challenge facing the sector is two-fold. First, those that are privileged to be connected to the grid, need improved services. They need to be connected 24×7, occasional outages and blackouts need to be better communicated in advance, the billing system and payment system needs to work seamlessly, and the leakage that happens through mal-governance at various levels of the system needs to be reduced. These are no small tasks. Appropriate use of ICT tools can catalyze many of the solutions to address these challenges. Secondly, those that are not on the grid yet, require that the grid be expanded to provide them with electricity services. In the interim, however, alternative renewable energy sources may be explored. Solar energy has been playing a commanding role in this situation, covering nearly 2 million rural homes with solar home systems that […]

  • BRIEF: Consumers lack knowledge about power outages

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