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Waste-based power plant projects facing uncertainty

  • Published at 07:12 am July 18th, 2013

An Italian company has failed to embark on two waste-based power station projects at Amin Bazar and Matuail in Dhaka due to lack of sufficient fund.

The company – Management Environment Finance SRL Ltd – sent a letter to the local government division (LGD) seeking a time extension.

The company signed an agreement with the LGD, Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) and Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) on February 22 this year.

As per the deal, the company was supposed to start the projects within 130 days of the agreement.

Though the deadline expired on June 28, the investor is yet to kick off the projects due to lack of sufficient fund, said officials of the LGD, DSCC and DNCC.

However, company Executive Director of Management Environment Finance SRL Ltd, Mir Hossain Ekram, gave a different version.

He said: “We have completed our preparation and allocated $400m for construction work of the two power plants. We will start them after the city corporations provide us with the land required to set up the projects.”

“We sent a letter to the department concerned of the government 15 days back requesting it to allocate the land we need for the projects.”

Mozammel Haque, additional secretary to the local government department of the local government, rural development and cooperatives ministry, was in conflict with the version of Mir Hossain.

He said: “The Italian company did not embark on the projects due to lack of money. They are trying to take a loan from a Dubai-based bank.”

On the land handover issue, the additional secretary said: “The Management Environment Finance SRL Ltd sent a letter to us requesting a time extension, it was not about the handing over of the land.”

When contacted the DSCC and DNCC officials said the land for construction of the power stations is ready.

DSCC Chief Waste Management Officer Captain SM Javed Iqbal told the Dhaka Tribune: “We have selected land for the power station at Matuail dumping ground.

Captain Bipon Kumar Saha, DNCC chief waste management officer too said the land at Amin Bazar dumping ground is ready. “But the Italian company have not yet contacted with the city corporation authorities.”

The government signed the deal with the Italian company to set up two separate power plants to generate 150MW of electricity based on solid waste.

As per the deal, the Management Environment Finance SRL Ltd will start supply of power to the national grid after 36 months from the date of agreement.

The Dhaka Electric Supply Company (DESCO) Limited, Dhaka Power Distribution Company Limited (DPDC) and Rural Electrification Board (REB) will purchase power from the company at Tk8.75 per unit (kilowatt-hour) for the next 20 years, reads the agreement.

Moreover, as per the deal, the two city corporations will provide the land, waste of Dhaka city corporation area, and all financial support to the Management Environment Finance SRL Ltd.