India’s Reliance pressing govt for high fiscal benefits

Manjurul Ahsan | Published: 00:43, Oct 26,2016

 
 

India’s Reliance is pressing the government to bag a high price for imported LNG which will be used in its power plants to be set up at different locations in Bangladesh.
At a meeting held on Monday afternoon with state minister for power, energy and mineral resources Nasrul Hamid, Reliance Group chairman Anil Dhirubai Ambani discussed the unsolicited proposal of his company, said officials.
Power division secretary Monwar Islam, Power Development Board chairman Khaled Mahmood and Petrobangla chairman Istiaque Ahmad attended the meeting among the others.
The government plans to allow Reliance in energy business under the Speedy Supply of Power and Energy (Special Provisions) Act 2010 that indemnified officials concerned against prosecution for making decisions.
Reliance Power Limited sought US$ 124.5 million per year for re-gasification of imported LNG at its floating terminal to be installed near Kutubdia Island while the state-run Petrobangla recently inked a contract with US firm Excelerate Energy at US$ 90 million for the same job, the officials said.
Besides, they said that the floating terminal of Excelerate Energy for re-gasification of imported LNG will be transferred to Petrobangla after 15 years of operation.
Istiaque Ahmad told New Age on Tuesday that the terms and conditions of the contract with Excelerate Energy would be a reference in negotiation with Reliance.
Reliance proposed to install a floating terminal near Kutubdia Island to import LNG aimed at supplying daily 500 million cubic feet of natural gas from the infrastructure.
The Indian company also plans to set up a number of power plants with a combined generation capacity of 3,000MW to be run on the gas supplied from the LNG terminal it would install.
Reliance’s proposal also includes that Petrobangla will supply natural gas to a 750MW power plant to be set up at Meghnaghat, Narayanganj, while it will supply equal volume of gas to Petrobangla in Chittagong from its LNG terminal.
Reliance wanted to sell the surplus gas, which will be imported in the form of LNG, to Petrobangla as the company would not require 500 million cubic feet of gas a day.
The Indian firm also wanted to use pipeline of Gas Transmission Company Limited, a subsidiary of Petrobangla, to transmit the imported gas from Kutubdia to Chittagong.
The power board will buy the electricity from Reliance at a negotiated price.
A power division official said settlement of the price of electricity was dependent on the settlement of import cost of LNG as well as its re-gasification charge to be realised by Reliance and gas transmission charge to be realised by gas transmission company.
Now, the government wants a ‘quick’ settlement of the negotiations for re-gasification of the imported LNG, transmission charge for the gas and electricity price, said officials.
On Monday, Nasrul Hamid asked Petrobangla and power board to complete negotiations by November 30 so that the commercial contracts could be signed during a visit of prime minister Sheikh Hasina to New Delhi, which is expected in December.
On June 6, 2015, Reliance signed a Memorandum of Understanding with power board to set up infrastructures to import LNG to feed its power plants in Bangladesh.
The company signed the deal shortly after Indian prime minister Narendra Modi was in Dhaka on a two-day visit.

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