Household gas supply through pipeline should be discouraged:Muhith

Finance Minister Abul Mal Abdul Muhith today said gas supply to households through pipeline should be snapped permanently as the service is already stopped in other parts of the world.

"Gas is the prime source of energy and we do not have enough gas. We need to fix our priority in using gas and we should not use gas irrationally for domestic purpose," he said at a seminar on 'Energy Security in Bangladesh: Farsightedness of Bangabandhu' at Petrobangla office here.

Muhith said use of energy could neither be stopped nor be reduced, but together everybody of the country can ensure the best use of limited natural resources. "We must stop misuse of natural gas as we don't have enough reserve."

"Despite Petrobangla's success in last two-and-half-years, it remained a big challenge to cope up with the high demand against a limited gas production," he added. The seminar was organized by Petrobangla to mark the `Energy Security Day'. State minister for power, energy and mineral resources Enamul Haque, adviser to the prime minister Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, Chairman Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission Yusuf Hossain, secretary of the energy ministry M Mijbhauddin, Petrobangla Chairman Dr Hossain Monsur, BPC Chairman Muktadir Ali and top officials of the energy ministry were present.

Petropbangla Director Mollah Mofidul Hossain presented the keynote paper. Muhith said Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman bought five gas fields - Titas, Habiganj, Rashidpur, Koilashtila and Bakhrabad - from Shell Petroleum Company on August 9, 1975 at a nominal price of 4.5 million British pounds. Because of this farsightedness, he said, the people of the country enjoyed natural gas at cheap prices for household use.

The government has been considering energy issue as number two challenge after food, he said, adding "to ensure our energy security we can do a lot through using energy savings equipment and take conservation measures."

According to the keynote, the country has a proven reserve of 4.3 TCF gas reserve and 2.6 TCF probable gas reserves, amounting a present market value of about 12.26 billion US dollars.

"We might not face such a gas crisis if they (BNP) took minimum initiative for exploring gas and producing electricity during their tenures," he added.

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