The cabinet committee on public purchase (CCPP) on Sunday approved a proposal to extend the agreement with India by another five years to import electricity from its Tripura state.
Now Bangladesh will, however, import 160 MW of electricity instead of previously agreed 100 MW at a relatively lower tariff, said Shamsul Arefin, additional secretary to the Cabinet Division, while briefing reporters.
Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal presided over the meeting, attended by the ministers who are the members of the committee.
As per the new proposal, Bangladesh will now pay Tk 7.13852 (Rs 6.27) per kilowatt hour (each unit) to India instead of Tk 7.99 (Rs 7.01).
Arefin said that Bangladesh could save Tk 706 crore for the lower tariff.
The new import deal will take a retrospective effect from Mar 17, 2021 and remain valid up to March 16, 2026, keeping all other conditions unchanged. But the annual escalation rate in tariff will be static at 2 percent, he added.
Bangladesh has been importing electricity from India since September 2013 and now its total import stands at 1,160 MW of which 1000 MW is being imported from West Bengal through Bheramara border while 160 MW from Tripura through Cumilla border.
There has been another agreement with Indian private company, Adani Group, to import another 1600 MW for which transmission lines are being installed.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid recently said the government plans to increase its electricity import to 9000 MW from neighbouring countries, including Nepal, Bhutan and India.
A deal is ready to import 500 MW from an Indian company’s power plant in Nepal.
Bangladesh will need to spend Tk 4,188 crore over the next five years to import the 160 MW power from India.