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PM’s adviser: Govt wants more private investment in power sector

  • Published at 12:03 am June 27th, 2018
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The government has a target to raise the power generation capacity to 24,000MW and 40,000MW in 2021 and 2030Syed Zakir Hossain Syed Zakir Hossain/Dhaka Tribune

'Investment and the development of innovative technology are the two major issues which need to be given more priority to meet the power generation target'

The government is encouraging private investment in the power sector to help move Bangladesh towards developed country status by 2041, the prime minister’s adviser on power, energy and mineral resources said on Tuesday.

Addressing the inaugural day of the Bangladesh Energy and Power Summit 2018, Dr Towfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury said the country faces “a number of financial and technical challenges” if it is to achieve the target of generating 60,000 MW of electricity by 2041.

“Investment and the development of innovative technology are the two major issues which need to be given more priority to meet the power generation target,” said the PM’s energy adviser, who was chief guest for the two-day event being organized by Chinese firm Wispool Group at a Dhaka hotel.

“The government is promoting net-metering so that private citizens can sell power to the national grid and help with meeting the growing demand for electricity.”

Dr Towfiq was non-committal when asked whether the government would again raise gas prices once one billion cubic feet of liquefied natural gas (LNG) imported from Qatar and Oman have been added to the national grid daily.

“Measures will be taken based on the situation,” he said.

Separately on Tuesday, Power Cell Director General Mohammad Hossain told the summit that 59 projects with a total power generation capacity of 14,434MW are currently under construction.

“A fresh guideline for the power sector is also being developed with the aim of facilitating investment,” he said, adding that Bangladesh presently has a power generation capacity of 18,000 MW.

Other speakers at the summit included Md Tajul Islam, the chairman of the parliamentary Standing Committee on Power, Energy and Mineral Resources; Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority executive member Dr M Emdadul Haque; and PricewaterhouseCoopers Bangladesh Managing Partner Mamun Rashid.