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Dhaka Tribune

Green energy for all

Immediate actions have to be taken for the reduction of such outrageous tariffs

Update : 17 Dec 2023, 01:44 PM

The fact that the average tariff on renewable energy in Bangladesh is $0.155 per kilowatt-hour -- more than double compared to India and Pakistan -- is not only outrageous, but also does not make any logical sense.

While it is understandable that renewable energy is still a novel concept in Bangladesh and as such has not achieved economies of scale, it does not mean that the prices should be double that of our neighbours. 
 
What’s more outrageous is that there are not proper regulatory measures in place to curb the prices. Neighbouring countries have predetermined tariff rates based on size and publicly disclosed cost estimations, but the regulatory authority of Bangladesh employs no such measures. This leaves private players in the sector free to charge whatever they want based on their own internal justification, which leaves the population at large vulnerable to predatory activities such as price gouging. 
 
Again, it is understandable that due to the immaturity of the sector overall, those invested in this sector have not achieved economies of scale yet. But, at the same time, a large portion of renewable energy projects are unsolicited, albeit large in scale, meaning that there is potentially a lack of proper demand projection.
 
The Energy Regulatory Commission needs to immediately step in and set up a proper, transparent tariff schedule. Stakeholders from the industry have to be consulted if necessary and immediate actions have to be taken for the reduction of such outrageous tariffs. 
 
Renewable energy is poised to play an important role not just in Bangladesh, but the world at large. Access to renewable energy needs to be democratized to a greater degree.

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