Govt has no intention to provide new gas connection

Prime Minister’s Energy Advisor Dr. Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury on Tuesday said that the government has no intention now to give new gas connection to household consumers.

“We’ve no intention (now) to provide gas connection to residential consumers. Our main target is to provide gas connection to power plants, industries and fertilizer factories,” he said in reply to queries by reporters following a seminar on energy efficiency at Sonargaon Hotel in the city.

Ruling out any immediate possibility to withdraw the ban on new gas connections to household consumers, Tawfiq Elahi said there is no government decision as yet to give new connection to them.

“Our main priorities are power, industries and fertilizer,” he further added.

The comment of the PM’s advisor was sought against the backdrop of recent reports in some newspapers that the government is contemplating to withdraw the ban on new household gas connection.

The government suspended providing new gas connection to all kinds of consumers in 2009.
During the imposition of the ban, it was said that all new connections will remain suspended until the gas production level reaches 2200 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD). Recently, the gas production crossed the level.

Some newspapers, referring to a recent meeting of the high officials of the Energy Ministry with the Prime Minister, reported that the government is contemplating to withdraw the ban on new gas connection.

About the reports, Tawfiq Elahi denied having any knowledge about such a decision and said that the government has taken steps to improve the capacity of the state-owned Bapex for more gas exploration and production.

He said if the gas reserve increases in future, then the government may consider the matter of the household consumers.

State Minister for Power and Energy Mohammad Enamul Haque, who also spoke in the day’s seminar on energy efficiency, said that at present, the gas demand is rising by 14 percent.

He said that the gas demand now is between 2700 MMCF and 3000 MMCFD. In such a situation, there is no possibility of providing gas connection to residential consumers.

However, Petrobangla chairman Dr. Hossain Mansur, who attended the function, said Pertrobangla is ready to provide gas connection to household consumers as gas production increased to more than 2200 MMCFD. The Petrobangla is waiting for the government’s decision, he added.

While addressing the seminar on “Improving energy efficiency in industrial boiler and furnace” organized by Titas Gas company and German agency GiZ, the Prime Minister’s Advisor urged all to use efficient boilers at the industries for the sake of energy conservation.

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