New and relocated industrial units in the economic zones will be given uninterrupted power supply, Nasrul Hamid, state minister for power, said yesterday.
He said industrialists should not worry about the availability of power as the generation capacity is increasing.
“There are about 4,000 megawatts of unused electricity at this moment and the government is paying for it,” he said while addressing a programme at The Westin Dhaka hotel.
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) organised the institutional dialogue styled “Success in power generation: best use of power in achieving dynamic growth”.
Bangladesh's installed power generation capacity is 20,854MW. Actual generation was 8,744MW yesterday, according to the power division.
“There is no power shortage in the country,” said the state minister.
He, however, said the government faces challenges in ensuring quality power transmission. The state minister also said entrepreneurs would not get gas and power connections if they set up industries in an unplanned manner.
Hamid said imported power is cheaper than locally generated one. It needs $1.5 billion in investment to generate 1,000MW of power.
Salman F Rahman, private industry and investment adviser to the prime minister, said the economic development of the country has improved in the last 10 years thanks to the advancement in power generation.
“We have to achieve double-digit growth within next five years though it is really difficult,” he said.
The businessperson said the private sector is the only engine that can help the country pull off the targeted economic growth.
“So, we have to remove all kinds of bottlenecks in achieving the growth target.”
The adviser said the new cabinet is giving emphasis on businesses for further growth.
Shafiul Islam Mohiuddin, president of the FBCCI, said private investment is not increasing at an expected rate due to unpredictable power tariff and bank interest rate.
He urged the government to give hints in advance about any power tariff plan to help investors take informed decisions on expanding businesses.
Ahmad Kaikaus, secretary of the power division, said the government has set a target to increase the installed power generation to 60,000MW by 2041.
Sheikh Fazle Fahim, senior vice-president of the FBCCI; Humayun Rashid, managing director of Energypac; Moin Uddin, chairman of Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board; Md Helal Uddin, chairman of the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority, and Mohammad Mejbahuddin, chief executive officer of the power division of United Group, were present.