ADB approves $167 m loan to improve gas production efficiency
Published : Monday, 21 November, 2016 at 10:57 AM Count : 611
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a $167 million loan to promote sustainable economic growth and reduce poverty in Bangladesh by improving production efficiency at a key gas field north of capital Dhaka and by expanding transmission infrastructure.
The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) is expected to lend an additional $60 million, subject to board approval, which will be managed by the ADB. It is the second project to be co-financed by ADB and AIIB in the country, said a media release.
The release said though Bangladesh's economy is growing fast, the domestic natural gas supplies cannot keep pace with soaring demand for energy, resulting in a rising dependence on oil and diesel-based power generation.
With gas reserves depleting, the government of Bangladesh is trying to meet the supply shortage by importing liquefied natural gas, it noted.
"The project will help the government address the country's energy crisis by making available additional clean energy, particularly imported natural gas, through the transmission network," said Hongwei Zhang, Finance Specialist (Energy) of the ADB's South Asia Department.
"By addressing gas supply constraints and transmission bottlenecks, the project will increase the energy sector's contribution to sustainable economic growth in Bangladesh," the expert added.
The project will install seven wellhead gas compressors to increase pumping pressure and ensure steady extraction at the Titas gas field, Bangladesh's largest field. The project will also boost gas transmission by building 181 km transmission pipeline from Chittagong to Bakhrabad, situated at the southeast of Dhaka.
The $453 million project is expected to be completed in late 2021. It will substitute the use of other fossil fuels, thereby reducing over 7,00,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year over the ensuing 10 years. The government of Bangladesh will provide $226 million for the project.
Natural gas is Bangladesh's main energy source and a major driver of economic growth, providing nearly 75 percent of total primary energy consumed. More than half of the natural gas produced is used to generate electricity.