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Dhaka Tribune

Energy Division instructs to list gas bill defaulters

Distribution companies ordered to send up-to-date arrears information

Update : 08 Jan 2021, 11:07 AM

The Energy and Mineral Resources Division has instructed gas distribution companies to list defaulters.

Instructions in this regard were given to the distribution companies on Thursday, confirmed a senior official.

Despite repeated attempts, many customers still do not want to pay the bill. Moreover, they create various complications while trying to collect the bill.

If this continues, it will not be possible to keep the import process of liquefied natural gas uninterrupted. Therefore, the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources is directly interfering in the collection of the bill this time.

The distribution companies and the ministry have been given three-point instructions under the directive signed by Anisur Rahman, senior secretary, Energy and Mineral Resources Division.

The letter signed on Thursday said:

1. Organizations like Titas Gas Distribution Company have to prepare an updated list of defaulting customers and send it to the ministry immediately.

2. If the arrears are not collected or paid, the disconnection work will be monitored regularly by the chairman of Petrobangla while the additional secretaries of the energy division will supervise.

3. In addition to the payment of arrears, the monitoring committee will also oversee the removal of illegal gas connections and pipelines.

The ministry has never taken an initiative like this before to collect bills, according to officials. This time the bill collection has stopped due to Covid-19.

Energy officials said the factories are running on gas. And since the factories are running, there is no reason to not pay the bill.

On December 15, Titas said in a report that at the moment, they will get Tk2,198.74 crore from the customer. Besides, other gas distribution companies have not yet sent the information on arrears to the ministry. Secretary Anisur Rahman has directed all companies to send up-to-date arrears information.

"We do not just use domestic gas now. We now have to import and supply gas from abroad. If we do not get the bill in this situation, how will we meet the demands of the exporters, " said an Energy Division official. 

“Meanwhile, we have to pay the regular International Oil and Gas Company (IOC) gas prices. All in all, if the customers do not pay the bill, then we will be in crisis”, added the official who asked not to be named.

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