State-owned Barapukuria Coal Mining Company Ltd (BCMCL) signed a Tk 167 crore deal with a foreign consortium to conduct a feasibility study at Digipara coal mine to develop a mining area for extracting about three million tonnes coal a year.
BCMCL secretary Md Abul Kasem Pradhania, German based MIBRAG Consulting International GmbH project manager Amir Khandaker, FUGRO Consult GmbH project director Rolf Baltes and Runge Pincook Minaroo Limited of Australia representative Simon Askey Doran signed the feasibility deal on behalf of their organizations on Tuesday.
State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid said the government is actively contemplates to explore local coal by protecting the nature with a view to making the country into a middle income one by the year 2021.
“We will develop the Dhigipara coal field using underground mining method with more concentration on environment as well as welfare of local peoples,” said the state minister while addressing a deal signing programme on feasibility study of Dhigipara Coal Field at hotel Sonargaon.
As per the deal, the consortium will conduct feasibility study within 24 square kilometers to assess the economic viability of the coalfield between June 1, 2017 and September 30, 2019.
Petrobangla and the , Energy and Mineral Resources Division have already handed over exploration licence of 4,000 hectare of Dighipara coal mine area to the BCMCL.
Addressing the programme the state minister pointed out that around 865 million metric tons of coals are reserved at various coal fields in the country.
“The socio-economic condition of people will be changed tremendously once the exploration begins properly, he observed. The minister said latest technology will be adopted to develop the coal fields by protecting the nature and without occurring any damage to the agricultural land.
Dighipara coal field was discovered by state-run Geological survey of Bangladesh (GSB) in 1995.
Four boreholes were drilled to confirm the coal deposits at the depth of 324-455 metres.
Coal deposits of Dighipara basin is the second largest among the discovered coal fields in Bangladesh, having more than double coal deposit than that of the Barapukuria basin.
Primary and Mass Education Minister Mostafizur Rahman, Energy and Mineral Resources Division secretary Nazimuddin Chowdhury, German ambassador to Dhaka Dr. Thomas Priznz, Australian ambassador to Dhaka Julia Niblett, Petrobangla Chairman Abul Mansur Md Faizullah, Barapukuria Coal Mine Company Managing Director Engr. Habib Uddin Ahmed and senior official concern attended at the signing function.