The government is planning to import 9000 megawatts (MW) of power from Bhutan, Nepal, Myanmar, and India by the year 2041.
The initiation of ‘Cross Border Electricity Trade’ to increase cooperation among Saarc countries is going on in full pace.
Though there have been many achievements in the production of electricity, in reality the light of electricity has not reached all households of Bangladesh yet.
The main reason for this is, production of electricity is lagging behind demand.
To come out of this situation the government is planning to import electricity from neighbouring countries according to sources at the Power Division.
The source also mentioned that apart from importing electricity from the four countries, the government is keen to invest in their hydro-electric power plants as well.
To fulfil this goal, talks between Nepal, Bhutan, and India are already going on. At the same time, construction of a power plant in collaboration with India is going on, from where Bangladesh will also import electricity.
In an interview, Mohammad Hussain, director general of Power Cell said: “Electricity is very essential in the development of Bangladesh. Only production in the country will not suffice. That is why government has plans to import.”
“A long term plan is in process which will not only bring electricity but the economic cooperation will deepen further,” said Hussain.
By the year 2020, electricity import will increase to 1200 MW, which by 2021 will be 2000 MW. 2500 MW by 2025, 5000 MW by 2030, 7000 MW by 2035, and eventually 9000 MW by 2041.
An official of the Power Development Board (PDB) said, “The Bangladesh government is jointly investing in Kuri 1 power plant in Bhutan. India, Nepal, and Bangladesh will have equal ownership of the project.”
“The Kuri 1 hydro electric power plant will generate 1125MW of electricity. Also, our government is willing to take part in the Gomari 1, 45MW, Gomari 2, 85MW, Nayera Amari 1, 125MW, Nayera Amari 2, 317MW, power plants in Bhutan, which the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is currently surveying,” he said.
The Power Division said Bangladesh is in the final stage of importing 500 MW of electricity from Bhutan’s GMR project. GMR is constructing the Apar Karnali 900 MW power plant too.
Other than that, Bangladesh is trying to import from other power plants of Bhutan as well. There is construction work of power plants going on in the private sector in Bhutan.
Myanmar also plans to produce 40,000 MW of electricity. Right now, a 10,000 MW power plant is under construction there.
This article was first published on banglatribune.com