Supplement, Oil & Energy

S Korea keen to invest in energy and others sector

Published : 31 Aug 2019 06:49 PM | Updated : 07 Sep 2020 09:31 PM

South Korea has shown its interest to invest in Bangladesh’s shipping sector, especially in the construction of Bay-terminal, Tridal energy and Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) terminal.

The interest came when State Minister for Shipping Khalid Mahmud Chowdhury held a meeting with Korean Oceans and Fisheries Minister Prof Daniel Seong-Hyeok Moon at Glad Hotel Yeouido in Seoul on Aug 29, official said.

During the meeting, they discussed bilateral issues related to mutual interests, including blue biotechnology, tidal energy, ocean safety, training in maritime sector, recruitment of Bangladeshi sailors and shipbuilding.

Ministry of Power and Energy official said several countries including Russia, Uited States, Germany and Japan are interested to invest in the country’s power and energy sector for being secure and investor-friendly. The ministry concerned is considering the matter.

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid had recently said, ‘Bangladesh is an investor-friendly country whose power and energy sector is expanding day by day. Our target is to generate 60,000 MW of electricity by 2041. So there is a huge opportunity for investment in the sector. Many countries regularly want to invest here.’ 

The country has witnessed an unprecedented development in the power sector in last one decade. And it has been possible due to the real-time sustainable planning and initiatives undertaken by the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

US giant Blackstone has recently made a proposal to build a 600MW gas-based power plant in a joint venture with a Bangladeshi company, which may further increase to 1300MW. Besides, the world renowned investment firm has shown interest in constructing a 100MW solar power plant in the country. To this end, it has submitted a proposal to the power division recently, an official said. 

Earlier, on February, 10, the US Ambassador in Dhaka, Earl Robert Miller, expressed interest in more gas exploration during a meeting with Minister Nasrul Hamid at the Bidyut Bhaban in the capital.

Earl Robert Miller said “The US has observed the potentiality to invest in Bangladesh’s energy sector. Bangladesh has achieved satisfactory progress in infrastructural development and labor safety,” he said.

The Russian Ambassador to Bangladesh, Alexander Ignatov on February, 27 said the Russian private sector is interested to invest in joint venture (JV) projects in Bangladesh.

During his meeting with Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen at the latter’s office, the Russian Ambassador assured him that the Russian government would continue cooperation with Bangladesh in power, energy, information communication, trade, defence and other areas of mutual importance. On the other hand, US Company Chevron is lifting more than 50 percent gas of the total production in the country. Last year, Chevron announced that it wants to quit operation in Bangladesh. Later, it changed its decision and want more investment in the energy sector here. Earlier, the government signed an MOU with US Company GE to build a 3600 MW LNG-based power plant. The country’s first LNG terminal was also built by the company.

Russian Gazprom has also explored more gas fields in Bangladesh. Now they are interested to work offshore.

Aramco, a state-owned oil company of Saudi Arabia, has proposed for investment to build a large oil refinery with the capacity of 20 million tons, in Bangladesh, said an official source.

Recently, German company Siemens has signed an MOU with the Bangladesh government to build a 3600 MW LNG-based power plant in Payra. They plan to build another power plant with similar capacity at Moheshkhali in Cox’s Bazar.

Entrepreneurs of Thailand, Singapore and other countries also want to invest in the power and energy sector. 

Bangladesh government has undertaken 13 mega projects in cooperation with India, Japan, China, Malaysia, South Korea and Singapore to set up coal-based power plants.

Eight mega coal-based power plant projects have been taken up in Pyra, Rampal, Matarbari and Moheshkhali with a total 9,960 MW generation capacity.

It is expected that the first mega project at Payra in Patuakhali of 1320 MW will come this year. The 1,200 MW coal-fired power plant at Matarbari is expected to go into operation by 2023. On the other hand, work is going on to set up a 1320 MW power plant at Rampal in Bagerhat. Besides, Rooppur Nuclear Power plant with two units, with the total capacity of 2,400 MW is under construction at Rooppur of Pabna.