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Public hearing on gas tariff hike continues

Published : 22 Mar 2022 10:03 PM | Updated : 23 Mar 2022 01:05 PM

The Technical committee of Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) has recommended gas prices be increased by Tk 105 and Tk 70 for two burner and single burner users in five districts of the south-western region.

The recommendation came on Tuesday at the four-day public hearing that began on Monday. 

Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) is holding the hearing, led by its Chairman Abdul Jalil, at the BIAM Auditorium in the city from 10 am to 5 pm everyday from March 21 to 24 to listen to the arguments from the stakeholders in the gas sector.

The gas distributors' Sundarban Gas Company Limited submitted a proposal back in January that the monthly gas price for a double burner be increased to Tk 2,100 from the existing Tk 975, while the price for a single burner be raised to Tk 2,000 from the current Tk 925.

At the hearing, the technical evaluation committee recommended raising the price of gas at taka 1080 from the current price taka 975 for double burner and Tk 990 from Tk 925 for single burner.

Apart from this, the committee has recommended to fix the price of gas at Tk 18 per cubic metre (each unit) instead of Tk 12 per cubic metre for metered household consumer, Tk 5.34 per unit of gas instead of the current rate of Tk 4.44 for power plant, Tk 15.50 instead of the current rate of Tk 13.85 captive power, Tk 5.34 per unit of gas instead of the current rate of Tk 4.44 for fertilizer, Tk 12.65 per unit of gas instead of the current rate of Tk 10.70 for tea industry. The technical committee has recommended increasing the price of gas for commercial use at taka 27.60 from taka 23 and taka 49.50 from taka 43 for CNG. 

At the beginning of the hearing, BERC Chairman Md Abdul Jalil said that the regulatory body would not make any rash decisions in this regard. The proposal to increase gas prices by 117 per cent in the current global scenario is not practical. No results would be given based on poor information.

Energy experts said that the price of gas from other sources has remained unchanged while the price of gas has gone up by 3 per cent. Consumers are in favour of not raising prices at this time.

Energy adviser of CAB Professor Shamsul Alam said that the energy division had multiple options. Instead of trying to recover, they wallow in their sadness and thus, experience more failure.

Meanwhile, the proposals were made by Titas Gas and Bakhrabad Gas companies on Wednesday, and Jalalabad Gas and  Karnaphuli Gas companies on Thursday.  After the conclusion of the hearing, the watchdog body will announce its decision within 90 days.

Official sources said Petrobangla and its seven subsidiary bodies submitted the proposals to raise gas prices at the bulk and retail levels following the directive of the Energy and Mineral Resources Division of the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources.

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