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BB to launch $300m foreign-fund scheme for green energy

39Panelists at a conference here on Tuesday observed that a huge potential of renewable energy, especially solar power generation, lies with the country’s irrigation pumps and building rooftops, reports UNB.
But, inadequate low-cost funding, absence of government incentives, non-existence of feed-in-tariff and lack of a concrete pro-investment policy have been the stumbling blocks in the way of promoting the renewable energy sector, they said.
“Each upazila can install 3000-6000 solar-run pumps to replace the existing conventional ones while rooftops of government buildings and schools can generate 1000 MW solar power in Dhaka,” said Munawar Misbah Moin, senior vice president of Bangladesh Solar and Renewable Energy Association (BSREA).
He said 300 solar-run pumps have so far been installed which have been running with a good success.
The BSREA organised the conference at Sonargaon Hotel titled: “Green Finance for Sustainable Development” in association with Bangladesh Bank, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda) and Infrastructure Development Company Ltd (Idcol).
Addressing the inaugural session, Bangladesh Bank governor Atiur Rahman urged banks to scale up financing in the renewable energy sector as part of their responsibility to save the future generation.
He said the central bank is planning to issue “green bond” with Idcol for promoting investment in the green energy, especially to create “green belt” in the country’s coastal areas.
He said Bangladesh Bank has long been promoting green financing as part of its policy and now about 50 products are getting benefit of its.
“Already, we’ve Tk 200 crore re-financing scheme while there is a plan to launch a $300 million green fund in foreign currency by the central bank on its own,” the BB governor said.
“But the government can’t alone do everything… that’s why the private sector involvement is a key to achieving the government’s goal of environment-friendly sustainable inclusive growth,” he said.
The conference was also addressed, among others, by Sreda chairman Anwarul Islam Sikder, Bangladesh Bank Deputy Governor SK Sur Chowdhurey, Idcol Managing Director and CEO Mahmood Malik and BSREA President Dipal C Barua.
Prof Dr Mizan R Khan of South East University made a keynote presentation at the conference.
In the panel discussion, Engineer Nurul Aktar of Energy Pac, said non-availability of land comes as a barrier for the solar power generation.
“But this could be easily overcome if rooftops of commercial and industrial buildings are used for this purpose. This could be a milestone in the solar power generation.”
Eminent energy expert and Buet Professor Dr Tamim said no private entrepreneur or bank will be encouraged to invest in the sector until a feed-in-tariff and a concrete policy is announced.
Underscoring the need for government incentives in renewable energy, he said no country could be successful in promoting green energy without government support.