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LNG import pushing up gas prices, public hearing from Monday

LNG import pushing up gas prices, public hearing from Monday 

Dhaka, Jun 10 : All the state-owned gas distribution and transmission companies including Titas Gas have sought to hike gas prices on an average 75 percent for different consumer groups.

Such price increase proposals, however, are not meant for household and commercial consumers. If comes in force, hike will mainly affect large scale consumers like power plants, fertiliser factories, captive power plants, industries, and CNG refueling stations.

Against this backdrop hearing on gas price hike proposal at retail level is going to start from Monday at the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC).

The watchdog body is organising the hearing at TCB Auditorium in the city responding to appeals from different state-owned entities in the country`s gas sector.

Gas companies argued that import of liquified natural gas (LNG) will push up their cost substantially.

“So, we have no alternative to raise our gas price if we want to sustain and continue our service”, said a top official of the Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Ltd.

The official sources said the household and commercial (hotel, restaurants etc.) consumers were kept outside the gas price hike purview considering the upcoming general election billed for December this year.

An official document, obtained by UNB, reveals that the largest gas distribution company Titas has proposed to raise 206 percent price for power plants as it proposed Tk 10 per cubic meter (CM) for power plants in place of exiting price of Tk 3.16.

The gas price for fertiliser factories were proposed to hike the highest 372 percent where it sought the price to be Tk 12.80 per CM against the existing rate of Tk 2.71 per CM.

The captive power plants’ gas price was proposed to be Tk 16 per CM against Tk 9.62 while Industries gas price was proposed at Tk 15 per CM against the existing Tk 7.76 per CM and CNG gas price was proposed to be Tk 40 per CM against existing rate of Tk 32.