Two BD firms to export LPG to Indian NE states
Published : Thursday, 10 October, 2019 at 12:00 AM Count : 366
Bangladesh's two companies will export 15,000 metric tonnes of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) per annum to the landlocked northeastern states of India to meet the household energy demands of the four percent of Indian population.
According to the plan Omera Petroleum and Beximco LPG will import bulk LP Gas from abroad and bottled it at Mongla before they export the LP gas to the Indian state-owned Indian Oil Corporation (IOC).
"It is a private sector initiative. We don't have any connection with the issue. The Commerce Ministry issued the license to the Bangladeshi companies for the business," a senior official of the Energy ministry told the Daily Observer on Wednesday.
He said this project will increase the job opportunity of some people here and the NBR could enhance its income.
The consignment will be shipped to Bishalgarh, a town in Sepahijala district of Tripura in India, through Bibirbazar border point in Cumilla.
LP gas will also be exported to the Northeast India's eight states - Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura.
"Yes, a Memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed during the Prime Minister's visit to India but all things will be done under private sector's initiative. The government would act here as a regulatory body," another official said.
Omera will initially export 1,000 tonnes of LPG per month with the quantity going up to 3,000 tonnes over the next six months.
Beximco LPG exported a consignment on a trial basis last month. It will take a couple of weeks to export its second batch.
According to the Commerce Ministry, in its proposal the Indian company said transporting goods to this region (northern states) from mainland takes days and cost escalates to a level that is not viable for businesses. It has only one narrow corridor in Siliguri of West Bengal.
As that was not commercially viable, the IOC talked to Bangladeshi companies for LPG supply and this year the IOC partnered with Omera and Beximco for the fuel. There are 19 importers and bottlers of LPG in Bangladesh and their combined production capacity is nearly 20 lakh tonnes against a demand for only nine lakh tonnes.
As their capacity is hugely under-utilized, exports to India, albeit at low-scale, will help them become commercially viable.