The government has unveiled a plan to generate 24,000 MW of electricity by the year 2021 to meet the country’s growing demand for power. At a seminar held at Bidyut Bhaban in Dhaka on 18 November, the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDP) unveiled a strategy paper titled “Power sector master plan 2010: Strategy towards 24,000 MW by 2021”.
While presenting the keynote paper Md. Mizanur Rahman, Director, System Planning of BPDB, said that “Power sector is facing challenges as primary fuel supply from indigenous resources is narrowing and the financing is capital intensive. Thus, we have to continue increasing power generation through fuel diversification,” He said that the demand for electricity in the country is increasing at a rate of 9 to 12 percent per year. “To meet this demand growth, we should go for fuel diversification for sustainable supply of primary fuel, and we need to ensure more private sector participation in power generation to overcome the fund crisis.” added Mizanur Rahman.
The power division planned to set up power plants with a combined generation capacity of about 17,900MW and to phase out the rundown plants with a combined generation capacity of over 3,500MW by 2021.
According to the plan, 7,651MW of the 17,900MW capacity will be installed by the private entrepreneurs which are 43 per cent of the total capacity to be installed by next eight years.
The planned power generation capacity to be installed by 2021 will be effective if the state-run Petrobangla can supply over 730 billion cubic feet of natural gas a year or over 2 bcf a day, BPC can supply about 2.1 million tonnes of fuel oil a year and the authorities concerned can supply necessary quantity of coal.
The authorities concerned now supply over 0.4 bcf less gas a day to the power stations against a demand for 1.14 bcf gas a day while up to 40 per cent capacity of the fuel oil-fired power plants remain unutilised due to cost cutting measures.