PM's India trip to facilitate more energy trade
The upcoming visit of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to India would facilitate the sharing of more power and energy between the two neighbouring countries, Nasrul Hamid, state minister for power and energy, said yesterday.
There is a high possibility of mutual power and energy trading between Bangladesh and India after the PM's visit, he said.
"We have already imported 600 megawatts power from India. Now, we are hoping to get another 2,000MW,” Hamid added.
Hasina will be visiting India from April 7 to 10 at the invitation of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Bangladesh wants to buy power from the open markets in India, he said while speaking as the chief guest at a discussion in the National Renewable Energy and Green Expo-2017. The four-day event began on Wednesday.
Dhaka University's Energy Institute and Bangladesh Solar Energy Society are jointly organising expo titled "Long Term Planning for Renewable Energy in Bangladesh 2017-2050" at the university's central playground.
Hamid also said the government had already held discussions with Bhutan and Nepal about importing power from the countries.
"India has agreed to allow Bangladesh to use its land to import electricity from Bhutan and Nepal," he mentioned.
Although the government has initiated efforts to discover hydrocarbon resources in the Bay of Bengal, it would take five to six years to get the results, the state minister added.
Bangladesh is increasingly looking outside to meet its growing demand for electricity.
Though the country more than doubled its power generation in the last eight years, one-third of the population still does not have access to electricity, while the government plans to bring all households under the electricity coverage by 2021.
At the discussion yesterday, Prof Mohammad Tamim, head of petroleum and mineral resources engineering department of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet), however, said there is a need to look into whether the country is going to be totally dependent on India for power and energy.
Institute of Energy Director Prof Saiful Huque chaired the programme, while lawmaker Nahim Razzaq, among others, also spoke.