People at home will have to pay an additional Tk300 for the gas in their stoves, in two phases starting from March.
Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) on Thursday announced that it was raising the price of gas for all sectors. BERC Chairman Monowar Islam announced the hikes in a press conference at the regulator's headquarters in Kawran Bazar.
Gas prices were last raised in September 2015.
Starting in March, the monthly gas bill for single burner stoves will be Tk750, which is currently Tk600. From June 1 it will be Tk900.
The bill for the double burner will be Tk800 from March 1 and Tk950 from June 1.
“Urban consumers use energy at a lower price than the rural consumers. So, it is very reasonable to raise the price of gas,” the BERC chairman said in response to questions from journalists.
This is a hike of about 55% to 58%. Similarly, homes with metered connections will have a 60% hike. While the current rate is Tk7 per cubic metre, from March 1 they will pay Tk9.10 and Tk11.20 from June 1.
In August last year, the BERC held an eight-day public hearing on gas transmission tariff and price hike proposals submitted by the state-owned gas transmission and distribution companies.
When asked whether the price of gas had been raised because of LNG, Chairman Monowar Islam said: “No, that is a wrong idea.
“The price has been raised fairly to match the cost of the energy.”
He added that with this price hike the government can collect an extra Tk4,185 crore annual revenue from which a portion will be used to meet the operating costs of gas distribution and transmission.
“The remaining portion will go to the government exchequer as supplementary duty and VAT. Another portion will be deposited to gas development fund and energy security fund,” Monowar said.
Only two of the distribution companies, Pashchimanchal Gas Company Limited and Sundarban Gas Company Limited, will gain margins from this increased revenue. These two are the newest companies.
Although domestic gas prices have been raised significantly, it is not the biggest hike. Manufacturers who make their own power from gas are taking the biggest hit. The cost of captive power will go up from Tk4.18 to Tk 8.98 on March 1 and on June 1 it will be Tk9.62, more than double the current rate.
Another hard-hit sector will be commercial users, who are mostly small restaurant owners, as they will have to pay Tk14.20 per unit from March and later Tk17.04 – almost double the current rate of Tk9.47.
For power stations, the price of gas will be Tk2.99 per cubic metre, up from Tk2.82 and from June 1 the price will be Tk3.16.
The gas price for fertiliser factories will be Tk2.64 from Tk2.58 and from June 1 the price will be Tk2.71.
In the industry category, the price of the gas will be Tk7.24 from Tk5.86 and from June 1 the price will be Tk7.76.
In case of the tea industry, the price of gas will be Tk6.93 from current price of Tk5.86 and then finally it will be Tk7.42.
For CNG users the price will be Tk38 in the first phase and from June 1 the price will be Tk40. The margin price for CNG operator has also been raised to Tk8 from Tk7.
The transmission charge for Gas Transmission Company Limited will be Tk0.2654 per cubic metre, up from Tk0.1565.