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Chinese technicians committed to keeping power supply going in Sri Lanka amid COVID-19

(People's Daily Online)    18:27, June 29, 2020
Chinese technicians committed to keeping power supply going in Sri Lanka amid COVID-19
Lyu Zeying at work at the Puttalam coal-fired power plant in Sri Lanka, June 27. (Photo/Xinhua)

“Ms. Lyu, please tell me your mother’s name. I’ll pray for her at the temple,” a Sri Lankan engineer said to his Chinese colleague, Lyu Zeying.

Lyu is a high-pressure welder with China Machinery Engineering Corporation, the Chinese contractor of the Puttalam coal-fired power plant in Sri Lanka. The power plant generates more than 40 percent of the electricity needed by the country.

In March, the Sri Lankan government announced curfew measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. The measures led to a drastic drop in the number of Sri Lankan staff working at the power plant, which in turn increased the Chinese employees’ workloads.

Due to the pandemic, Lyu and her husband were unable to attend their daughter’s wedding. Even more sadly for the couple, Lyu’s mother passed away, but they were unable to come back to the country to bid a last farewell to her.

“We had to stick to our duty to ensure the smooth operation of the power plant while fighting against the pandemic,” Lyu explained.

Sri Lanka is in dire need of high-pressure welders, which makes Lyu indispensable to the construction of the power plant. She and her husband always rush to provide help when they are needed.

In April, the project’s Chinese staff worked day and night to improve the plant’s power generation so that it could provide 50 percent of electricity needed by the country during the pandemic.

In addition to offering technical support to the Sri Lankan side, the Chinese team also contributed to the country’s pandemic control efforts. On June 1, it donated an infrared temperature screening system to the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB), which has greatly improved the efficiency of carrying out body temperature checks of staff at the power plant.


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