The government will start supplying imported liquefied natural gas (LNG) to the national grid from July 4 thanks to the onshore gas pipeline connecting the floating storage in Cox’s Bazar with the main demand centre in Chattogram.
“We are hopeful of commissioning the LNG supply on July 4. Initially, a maximum of 350mmcfd of LNG will be supplied to the grid,” M Quamruzzaman, managing director of Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL), told a hearing on gas tariff hike at TCB auditorium in the city on Monday.
Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) chairman Monowar Islam chaired the hearing.
M Quamruzzman said they will need to mobilise around Tk 17,000 crore to create a revolving fund for LNG import.
“To meet the cost, we will need a net revenue of Tk 0.40 per cubic metre of gas. Otherwise, LNG import will face a major setback,” he said.
Petrobangla officials at the hearing said they will need Tk 33.44 per cubic metre to import 1000mmcfd of LNG at a cost of $8.5 per mmcfd inclusive of import duty and other charges.
After mixing 1000mmcfd imported LNG with 2700mmcfd local natural gas, the cost will come down to Tk 12.89 per cubic metre, the officials said.
Local natural gas costs Tk 5.32 per cubic metre.
Consumer Association of Bangladesh (CAB) energy adviser Prof M Shamsul Alam opposed the notion to raise the tariff of natural gas before commissioning the imported LNG.
CAB proposed to set the gas price at Tk 9.09 per cubic metre after regasification of LNG.
BERC chairman Monowar Islam told the hearing that BERC will decide on gas tariff hike proposals considering the greater interest of the consumers and the financial capacity of gas distribution companies.
He urged the consumers to keep faith on the BERC, terming ‘Each crisis is an opportunity.’