Price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) has been slashed again. Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) announced the new price, saying that a 12kg LPG cylinder’s price has been reduced by Tk 75.24. A retail consumer will now get it at Tk 999 instead of Tk 1,074 (including VAT). Prices of other sizes of LPG cylinders – from 5.5kg to 45kg – will go down rationally, Md Nurul Amin, newly appointed chairman of BERC, said at a press briefing on Monday at the BERC office in Dhaka. The new prices will be effective from 6 pm today (July 3, 2023). LPG price drops by Tk 13.42 per kg BERC officials said the LPG price witnessed a decline in the local market due to the decrease in the prices of Saudi CP (contract price). Bangladeshi LPG operators normally import their products from the Middle-East market on the basis of Saudi CP. As per the BERC decision, the price of “auto gas” (LPG used for motor vehicles) also dropped to Tk 46.59 (including VAT) per litre from the previous Tk 50.09. 12-kg LPG price goes up by Tk 57 to Tk 1235 The price of LPG, marketed by state-owned LP Gas Company, will remain the same as it is locally produced with a market share of less than 5 percent. LPG witnessed the highest price at Tk 1,498 (per 12kg cylinder) in the local market in February this year following the start of the Russia-Ukraine war in February last year. 12kg LPG cylinder to cost Tk 244 less
Former senior secretary Md Nurul Amin has been appointed as the chairman of Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC). Prior to the new position, the former bureaucrat, who hailed from Chandpur district, served as chairman of state-owned Karmasangshan Bank. Nurul Amin last served the Planning Ministry as its senior secretary and retired from the job in April 2022. A gazette notification, issued by the Energy and Mineral Resources division today(Tuesday), said Nurul Amin will serve the BERC for next three years from the date of his joining under a contractual agreement. Earlier, the government had appointed three new members to the BERC. They are - Dr Md Helal Uddin, Abul Khayer Md Aminur Rahman and Dr Muhammad Yamin Chowdhury. All of three appointees are retired bureaucrats. The Chairman post of the regulatory authority as the post remained vacant since January 30 this year after completion of the tenure of BERC Chairman Md. Abdul Jalil. BERC member Md. Kamruzzaman was serving as acting chairman of the regulatory body following retirement of Abdul Jalil.
Three members have been appointed at the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC). According to three separate notifications, issued by Energy and Mineral Resources Division, Helal Uddin, a former additional secretary who served as chairman of Sustainable and Renewable Energy Authority of Bangladesh (Sreda), former director general of Hydrogen Unit Abul Khair Md Aminur Rahman and Dr Md Yamin Chowdhury have been made its members. Also Read: JS passes amendment to BERC Act amid opposition protests On January 31, contract tenures of chairman and three members expired and the posts remained vacant. Now only one member of the BERC, out of 5, is now serving.
Electricity tariff was raised in Bangladesh at both retail and bulk levels, with effect from tomorrow (February 1). The Power Division — through administrative order and in two separate gazette notifications — raised the tariff. According to the new order, the retail tariff was raised at different levels of consumers. The tariff was raised for lower-level consumers by an average 5 percent to Tk 4.14 per unit (each kilowatt hour) from Tk 3.94 per unit. Bulk tariff was raised by 8.06 percent to Tk 6.70 from Tk 6.20 per unit. Enhancement in bulk tariff means, the distribution companies will purchase electricity by an increased rate of Tk 0.50 per unit from Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) while enhancement in retail tariff means, consumers will have to pay enhanced rate for using electricity. Read more: BPDB submits retail power tariff adjustment proposal seeking a 19.44 percent hike Earlier on January 13, the government raised the electricity tariff by 5 percent at the retail level with effect from January 1. At that time, the average tariff for all consumers went up by Tk 0.36 to Tk 7.49 from Tk 7.13. On November 21, the bulk power tariff was hiked by 20 percent to Tk 6.20 per kilowatt hour by Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) with effect from December 1. The government recently amended the BERC Act empowering the Power Division to raise power, gas and petroleum fuel by administrative power any time it wants. Read more: CPD raises question about power tariff enhancement proposal Applying that amended Act, the new gazette notification was issued on January 30 to raise the electricity tariff at bulk and retail levels, bypassing the authorities of the energy regulator. Meanwhile, energy experts believe the tariff enhancement decision came in compliance with the conditions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that recently approved $4.5 billion in loan to Bangladesh.
The financial loss of the state-owned Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) is likely to cross Tk 54,000 crore in the current fiscal after the hike in the price of gas increased their input cost. In 2021-22 its losses were Tk 29,915 crore. “We have to count Tk 10,000 crore extra cost to pay the gas bills following the new gas price enhancement,” a top official of the BPDB told UNB. He said the new cost of gas purchase was already communicated to the Power Division which had already raised the issue at a high-level meeting at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) seeking further instruction. The government on January 18 raised the retail gas prices for public, private and captive power plants and also for industries and commercial users with effect from February 1. Also Read: Saudi firm, BPDB sign deal to set up 1000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh As per the new government announcement, the gas prices have been increased by almost three times for public and private power plants while almost double for captive power plants and industries, and significantly hiked for commercial users. However, prices for household consumers, CNG-run for motor vehicles and tea estates were kept unchanged. The Energy and Mineral Resources Division set the prices through a gazette notification issued on Wednesday applying the new amendment to the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) Act, which empowered the government to set all kinds of energy prices bypassing the regulator’s jurisdictions at any time. As per the gazette notification, the public and private power plants including the IPP and rental power plants will pay gas price at Tk 14 per unit (each cubic metre) instead of previous price of Tk 5.02. The rise is 179 percent. Read More: The Tk 700 crore per month hole in the deal with Adani Power The captive power plants, small power plants and commercial power plants will pay Tk 30 per unit instead of the previous price of Tk 16 which is an 88 percent rise. It means after the current enhancement in gas price, the loss in the space of one fiscal will go up by over Tk 24,000 crore, said the sources at the BPDB - an almost 80 percent jump. According to BPDB’s own latest estimates, the financial loss was supposed to cross Tk 48,000 crore in the 2022-23 fiscal from Tk 29,915 crore in the fiscal year 2021-22. But after the hike in bulk power tariff, the loss was calculated to come down by about Tk 4000 to Tk 44,000 crore. “But now the loss will go up by Tk 10,000 crore due to the gas price hike effective from February 1,” said the official referring to their latest calculation. Read More: Saudi firm, BPDB sign deal to set up 1000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh The directorate of finance of BPDB prepared this calculation on the basis of an audited report, official sources said. On November 21, the bulk power tariff was raised by about 19.92 percent – to Tk 6.20 per kilowatt hour (each unit) from the previous Tk 5.17 – with effect from December 2022. As per the calculation, the loss has shot up excessively mainly for the two reasons — primary fuel price escalation and devaluation of the local currency. "Among the two, the devaluation of local currency emerged as the major reason," a top official of the BPDB told UNB. Read More: BPDB’s financial loss set to increase by over two-thirds to Tk 48,000cr He informed that the BPDB was going to incur a loss of about Tk 10,000 crore solely due to the high rate of dollar. Earlier, the US dollar exchange rate was calculated at Tk 85 which is now at Tk 107 which means the cost increased by Tk 22 per dollar. The BPDB has to pay about $9 billion annually to buy electricity from private sector plants, to pay capacity charges and also to import other materials from abroad for its own purposes. The BPDB has a power purchase agreement with a huge number of private power generation companies to buy their electricity. Available statistics reveal, currently, the country’s installed power generation capacity is over 25,500 MW and more than 50 percent of electricity is generated by the private sector through independent power producers, rental and quick rental power plants. Read More: BPDB submits retail power tariff adjustment proposal seeking a 19.44 percent hike Import of electricity from India is also counted as private sector generation. The private sector operators mainly use furnace oil, natural gas and diesel. Of these, 4,700 MW is generated by using furnace oil.
Retail power tariff hiked 5% to Tk0.19 per unit for lifeline consumers, Tk0.36 on average for others
The government has raised the electricity tariff by 5 percent at the retail level. Now the average tariff for all consumers will go up by Tk0.36 to Tk7.49 from Tk7.13, the Power Division said in a media statement Thursday. The tariff for lifeline consumers, who use up to 50 units (kwh) a month, was raised by Tk0.19 to Tk3.94 per unit from Tk3.75. The new tariff will be effective from January 1. The monthly demand charge was also raised for different types of consumers. The tariff was raised through an administrative order, issued by a gazette notification in the evening. The decision to raise the power tariff at the retail level was taken under the new amendment to the BERC Act, which allowed the government to take any decision in this regard bypassing the regulator's jurisdiction. However, the Power Division's 19-page gazette notification did not say anything about the average hike in tariff or its increase in percentage. Read more: Govt to raise retail power tariff this month State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid clarified it saying the electricity tariff was raised by Tk0.19 per unit at the retail level, 5 percent up from the existing one. Nasrul also said the tariff will be adjusted every month from now on. "We had to raise the tariff to cover about 20 percent hike in bulk level while the government subsidy was also taken into consideration," he told UNB. "In this fiscal year, the government will have to provide Tk28,000 crore as a subsidy, which was Tk17,000 crore in the last fiscal year." Justifying the 5 percent hike in retail tariff, the state minister said that the government had to go for upward tariff adjustment because of the growing energy prices globally. "The coal price has gone up to $250 per metric tonne, which was only $90 per MT last year." Earlier, BERC raised the bulk power tariff by about 19.92 percent on November 21 with effect from December 1. After that, six power distribution entities submitted their respective proposals to BERC seeking a similar, 19.44 percent, hike in retail power tariff at the consumer level. But within a week, the cabinet on November 28 approved an amendment to the BERC Ordinance 2022, allowing the government to set fuel tariffs on its own under special circumstances without having to wait for the commission's public hearing and decision. Read more: CPD raises question about power tariff enhancement proposal Earlier, during a public hearing, the technical evaluation committee (TEC) of BERC recommended raising the weighted average tariff of electricity by 15.43 percent at the retail level against the demand of the distribution companies for hiking it by about 20 percent. The committee suggested setting the weighted average retail tariff at Tk8.23 against the existing Tk7.13 per unit (each kilowatt hour) with a hike of Tk1.10 per unit. Consumers Association of Bangladesh Vice-President Professor M Shamsul Alam called the power tariff hike by the government's raising with an administrative order a "bad example," which will "encourage corruption and irregularities in the power sector." This move will be detrimental to ensuring accountability and transparency which is being established by BERC's public hearing, he said.
The government has decided to raise the power tariff at the retail level this month bypassing the recommendation of BERC. Reliable sources said the price is likely to be raised by an average 5 percent. A gazette will be issued about the electricity hike soon, said the sources, speaking on condition they can’t be named. Read more: Public Hearing: Evaluation committee for 15.43 pc power tariff hike at retail level Meanwhile, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid on Thursday said that the electricity tariff will be raised by Tk 0.19 per unit at retail level. The new tariff will come into effect from January 1, he told reporters. Earlier in December, Nasrul said that if the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) delays to decide on retail power hike proposals, the Power Division will make its own decision. The BERC raised about 19.92% bulk power tariff on November 21 with effect from December 1. Subsequently, six power distribution entities submitted their respective proposals to the BERC seeking a similar 19.44% hike in retail power tariff at consumer level. Read more: CPD raises question about power tariff enhancement proposal But within a week, the Cabinet on November 28 approved an amendment to the BERC Ordinance 2022 to empower the government to set fuel tariff on its own under special circumstances without waiting for the commission's public hearing and decision. Earlier, the technical evaluation committee (TEC) of BERC recommended raising the weighted average tariff of electricity by 15.43 percent at the retail level against the demand of the distribution companies for hiking it by about 20 percent. The committee suggested setting the weighted average retail tariff at Tk8.23 against the existing Tk7.13 per unit (each kilowatt hour) with a hike of Tk 1.10 per unit.
The decision on retail power tariff is likely to be announced by January 30. “We want to announce the commission’s decision by January 30,” said Abdul Jalil, chairman of the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC), while making his concluding remarks at the end of the public hearing on the proposals of the distribution entities to raise power tariff at the retail level. Other members of the commission were present on the occasion. The four-year tenure of the chairman and some other members of the regulatory body is scheduled to expire on January 30. Read More: Public Hearing: Evaluation committee for 15.43 pc power tariff hike at retail level Earlier, the technical evaluation committee (TEC) of BERC recommended raising the weighted average tariff of electricity by 15.43 percent at the retail level against the demand of the distribution companies for hiking it by about 20 percent. The recommendation of the evaluation committee was placed at the public hearing today that began in the city’s BIAM Auditorium at 10 am. The committee suggested setting the weighted average retail tariff at Tk8.23 against the existing Tk7.13 per unit (each kilowatt hour) with a hike of Tk 1.10 per unit. However, the five-member commission, headed by its chairman Abdul Jalil, will make the final decision within the next 60 days as per the latest amendment to the BERC Act 2010. Read More: Public hearing on retail power tariff hike proposals begins Sunday All the six state-owned power distribution bodies - Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB), Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (BREB), Dhaka Power Distribution Company Limited (DPDC), Dhaka Electric Supply Company Limited (Desco), Northern Electricity Supply Company PLS (Nesco), and West Zone Power Distribution Company Limited (WZPDCL) - submitted their proposals following BERC’s decision on November 23 last year to hike the bulk power tariff by 19.92 percent with effect from December 1. The lone state-owned transmission entity Power Grid Company of Bangladesh (PGCB) also placed a separate proposal for raising wheeling charges. The state-owned BPDB first placed its proposal on November 23, seeking a 19.44 percent hike in retail tariff. After that, all other distribution entities also placed almost the same proposal. Read More: CPD raises question about power tariff enhancement proposal Participating in the public hearing, all the consumer rights groups, including the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB) strongly opposed the proposals of the distribution and transmission entities. CAB Vice-President ASM Shamsul Alam said the initiative to increase the electricity tariff at the retail level is against the public interest. “Instead of containing corruption, irregularities, and system loss in the power sector, the government is trying to find an easy solution through raising tariff,” he said. Read More: BERC now to consult with govt before any move on retail power tariff hike proposals “If the electricity tariff is raised even further, it will further push up inflation in 2023, which will only intensify public sufferings and the common people will feel the pinch as they will have to pay the ultimate price,” he added. As per the latest number, the financial loss of the BPDB, the principal organisation in the power sector and also the single buyer of electricity from private sector power plants, is likely to increase by Tk18,094 crore in one year. According to the BPDB’s own latest estimates, the financial loss will cross Tk48,000 crore in the 2022-23 fiscal from Tk29,915 crore in FY22, an increase of almost 67 percent. Read More: Raising retail power tariff: 3 more distribution companies submit proposals Sources said the BPDB’s revenue deficit has further increased due to its purchase of electricity at a higher price and sale at a lower price, the hike in petroleum fuel prices and also the increased exchange rate of the US dollar. Officials said the recent 19.92 percent hike in the bulk tariff may help the BPDB reduce its loss by only Tk5,000 crore while a huge revenue deficit will remain a big burden. However, the bulk power tariff hike put pressure on power distribution companies to submit their retail tariff hike proposal to BERC to cover their own revenue gaps. Read More: BPDB submits retail power tariff adjustment proposal seeking a 19.44 percent hike
Price of liquified petroleum gas (LPG) has decreased by Tk 5.39 per kg to Tk 102.70 from previous price of Tk 108.09 per kg as Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) has announced its latest price for the month of January. As per the new price, 12kg LPG cylinder cost has lowered by Tk 65 as a retail consumer will get it at Tk 1232 instead of Tk 1297. LPG prices for other sizes of cylinders – from 5.5kg to 45kg – will go down rationally, said BERC chairman Abdul Jalil, who announced the new prices at a virtual press briefing. Read more: Industries can now use LPG as a reliable energy solution: Speakers As per the announcement, the price of “auto gas” (LPG used for motor vehicles) also decreased to Tk 57.41 per litre from previous price of Tk 60.41 per litre, down by Tk 3 per litre. The new prices will be effective from 6 pm today (January 2, 2023). The price of LPG, marketed by state-owned LP Gas Company, will remain the same as it is locally produced with a market share of less than 5%. Read more: 12kg LPG cylinder to cost Tk 46 more The LPG price went up to the highest, Tk 1,439 (per 12kg cylinder), in the local market, following the start of the Russia-Ukraine war in February last year. LPG price in Bangladesh was the lowest at Tk 1,225 for a 12kg cylinder in January last year and it witnessed continuous hikes in February, March and April in 2022.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has said that if the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) delays to decide on retail power hike proposals, then the Power Division will make its own decision. He made the remarks while talking to reporters at the sideline of a stakeholders meeting on “Integrated Energy and Power Master Plan (IEPMP)”, organized by the Japan International Cooperation Agency, at a hotel in the city on Tuesday. Outgoing Japanese Ambassador Ito Naoki also addressed the event. Read more: BERC now to consult with govt before any move on retail power tariff hike proposals Responding to a question on the role of energy regulator after the amendment to the BERC Act 2010 which gives the government arbitrary authority to increase the prices of power and energy bypassing the public hearing process, the State Minister said if the BERC takes so much of times in taking decision on price adjustment issue, then the government will take decision on its own. . He said normally BERC will follow its own process to decide on the price adjustment. “But only in an emergency situation, the government will take the decision." The BERC raised about 19.92 percent bulk power tariff on November 21 with effect from December 1. Subsequently, six power distribution entities submitted their respective proposals to the BERC seeing a similar 19.44 percent hike in retail power tariff at consumer level. Read more: Raising retail power tariff: 3 more distribution companies submit proposals But within a week, the Cabinet on November 28 approved an amendment to the BERC Ordinance 2022 to empower the government to set fuel tariff on its own under special circumstances without waiting for the commission's public hearing and decision. Nasrul Hamid said the government has been working to provide electricity at an affordable price. “But the situation is not in the hands of the government as we have to depend on the global market for primary fuel import”, he added. He, however, said the government is thinking of considering the petroleum fuel price adjustment in consistency with the global downtrend in energy price. “We’ve asked the officials to examine whether we could adjust prices every three months keeping in line with the global market,” he added.