Jan 19, 2019

Iron theft at China Bay oil tanks (Pics) Featured

The iron from two oil storage tanks at the Trincomalee Oil Tank Farm have been cut and stolen due to the negligence of the Lanka Indian Oil Company (LIOC).

The thieves had used gas lamps to cut the body section of the tanks.

The bottom of the tanks had also been cut.

The China Bay Police had arrested 10 persons in connection with the iron theft on January 12.

The 101 oil storage tanks were built in 1930 by the British and in 1964 the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation had paid the British Government £ 250,000 and got them released on behalf of the Sri Lankan Government.

This oil tank farm had been vested with the CPC since April 01, 1964, but to date the land ownership has not been given to CPC.

The oil tank farm comprises of two sections with 85 tanks in the upper complex and 14 tanks in the lower complex.

On February 07, 2003 a temporary agreement was signed with the LIOC for 35 tanks and the agreement was just for six months until a proper agreement was signed.

However, until now a proper agreement has not been signed and the LIOC is using these tanks illegally.

It is also said that due to LIOC using these tanks, the CPC incurs a loss of around Rs. 2000 million annually.

Currently, two FR petitions filed (FR318/2018 and FR319/2019) in the Supreme Court for the immediate return of these tanks to CPC is in progress.

On several previous occasions parts of these tanks had been cut off and sold illegally.

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