Energy sector alocation rises 98 percent

Energy sector alocation rises 98 percent

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The government has increased its allocation for the energy and power sector by 98.54% in FY 2015-16 than the last fiscal. A total of Tk 18,540 crore is allocated for this sector in the proposed budget of 2015-16 fiscal.
In the revised budget of FY 2014-15, the amount was Tk 9,338 crore.
For power division, the allocation is Tk 16,503 crore while for the Petroleum and Mineral Resources division, the allocation in Fy 2015-16 is Tk 2,037 crore. The respective numbers were Tk 8,286 crore and Tk 1,052 in the FY 2014-15.Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the government has placed the power and energy sector on its top priority list and is therefore providing it with resources
AMA Muhith said that the Power crisis has almost been mitigated. “We are now taking a number of steps aimed at lasting and sustainable solution”
Muhith said that coal will be the main fuel after 2015. Mentioning some of the important steps, he said that the Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company for setting up 1,320 MW coal-fired power plant at Rampal has already been formed, an agreement with JICA for the construction of 1,200 MW coal-based power plant at Matarbari is signed.
He also said that as a long term solution of power crisis, the government has undertaken a plan to generate 2,000 MW and 4,000 MW electricity from nuclear energy by 2022 and 2030 respectively.
About power import, Muhit said, “We have fixed a target to import 6,500 MW electricity by 2030 from the neighboring countries. Since November 2013, we are importing 500 MW electricity from India. Import of additional 600 MW is under process. Discussion on importing hydro electricity from Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar and north-eastern region of India is in progress”.
The finance minister said, till December 2014, about 3 lakh 31 thousand km transmission line has been constructed to supply electricity to 1 crore 62 lakh users. “There is a plan toconstruct 10 thousand km new transmission line and 1 lakh 50 thousand km new distribution line to bring everybody under electricity coverage”, said Muhit.
About natural gas, the finance minister said that the gas exploration activities have been strengthened while preparations have been made for LNG import. “To increase supply of gas, we will have to step up gas exploration within our maritime boundary. At the same time, formulation of a long term integrated master plan for exploration, extraction, import, distribution, and use of gas is urgent as well as important”.
Muhit said that the government has started installing pre-paid meters in all households in phases over the next three years to ensure economic use of electricity. Beside the expansion of energy production, the government also places emphasis on saving of energy by 10, 15 and 20 percent within 2016, 2021 and 2030 respectively through saving and conservation of energy in the industrial, commercial and residential sectors, said Muhit.
“To this end, we are formulating the ‘Energy Efficiency and Conservation Master Plan’. Steps are underway to implement energy auditing and energy management programmes in industries. Alongside, we have undertaken energy star labeling programme to encourage the use of efficient appliances among people”, Muhit added. – Staff Reporter

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