Prime minister’s energy adviser Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury on Tuesday urged all to have patience to see development in the power sector saying that sometimes a bit of load-shedding is good, or else, people will forget the progress achieved in electricity generation.
“Load-shedding should be there to some extent to keep the past in mind. This is also a blessing of Allah…If there’s no load shedding people will forget the improvement achieved by the time,” he said.
He made the comments while talking to reporters on the sidelines of a deal signing ceremony of a 1320MW power plant with China Huadian Hong Kong Co. Ltd, a subsidiary of the China Huadian Corporation.
The state-owned Power Development Board (PDB) signed the memorandum of understanding (MoU) to set up coal-fired power plant at Maheshkhali Island in the southeastern cost of the country under a joint venture with the Chinese company.
The signing ceremony at the Biduyt Bhaban was also addressed by foreign minister Abul Hasan Mahmud Ali, Chinese ambassador Li Jun, power secretary Monwar Islam, PDB chairman Abduhu Ruhullah and China Huaduan Corporation president Cheng Niongao.
About the recent widespread load-shedding across the country, Tawfiq-e-Elahi said though the country’s power generation capacity is 10,000 MW, it could hardly generate 7,000 MW.
He claimed that power plants of about 2000 MW capacity are now under maintenance and another 1000 MW, while some rental plants cannot generate power of their full capacity due to the prevailing heat wave.
Tawfiq-e-Elahi said the recent nor’wester at different parts of the country also affected the local power system, resulting in the increased power cut.
The PM’s adviser urged the Chinese company to complete the setting up of at least one unit of the proposed Maheshkhali power plant within the next three years before end of the current government’s tenure.
He said Bangladesh also signed a deal with India for setting up a power plant of the similar capacity at Rampal, Khulna.
“Both power plants will use the state-of the art technology to keep the pollution at a very minimum level and their dust management will be highly efficient,” the PM’s adviser said.
Foreign minister Abul Hasan Mahmud Ali said the sign will give a new shape in Bangladesh’s relation with China as the government unveiled a plan to generate 39000 MW by 2030. As part of the plan, about 11000 MW of electricity will be generated by 2018.
“Nuclear power plant project and the other power plant projects are the clear manifestation of our commitment,” he said.
Chinese ambassador Li Jun said this is just a first step towards a thousand mile-long march and a milestone in the mutual cooperation.
Officials said the cost of the project at Maheshkhali was not estimated but it will be 70:30 debt:equity ratio project.
Both the PDB and Huadian will set up a joint venture company and implement the project on build-own-operate basis by 2019. Then PDB will purchase electricity from the project for 25 years term.
Officials said this has been the second deal with Chinese companies following the state-owned North West Power Generation Company’s first deal with China National Machinery Import Export Corporation (CMC) last month for setting up a similar capacity coal-fired power plant in Patuakhali.
Huadian produces about 10 percent of China’s power and is one of the five big power producers. At present, its production capacity is about 100,000 MW of power across China.
Source: Prothom Alo