Indian conglomerates backtrack on power plant plan in Bangladesh

Reliance Group, an Indian conglomerate, will now set up a 750-MW gas-fired power plant instead of 3000-MW one due to 'land constraint'.

On the other hand, another giant Adani Group will set up a 3000-MW power plant in India and sell its electricity to Bangladesh instead of its previous offer for setting up 1,600 MW coal-fired power plants in Bangladesh, UNB reports.

As per the latest development, official sources said, the Reliance Group will set up its 750-MW LNG-based power plant in Meghnaghat and set up a floating storage and re-gasification unit (FSRU) at Moheshkhali to import gas to supply to its own plant.

"Actually, Reliance's initial proposal was to set up 3000-MW LNG-fired power plant. Such a gigantic project needs huge land which is not available and ready in government hand," said an official at the Power Division.

He said there is only a land available at Meghnaghat near Dhaka to house a 750-MW power plant.

According to him, Reliance was asked to purchase a land under a private initiative. "If they can do it, then the government will think about allowing their further investment to set up more projects," said the official involved in the investment entertaining process.

About the Adani Group's proposed investment, the official said after examining different primary feasibilities, the Indian giant has now decided to set up a 3000-MW capacity power plant in suitable location in India and sell the generated electricity to Bangladesh. "Adani is now thinking about selling 3000 MW power to Bangladesh from India, not setting up any plant in Bangladesh," he added.

According to officials at the Power and Energy Ministry, representatives of both the Reliance and Adani groups have met Bangladesh officials on different occasions following the memorandums of understanding (MoU) signed in June last year during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Dhaka visit.

The combined value of the two deals is $5.5 billion, with Reliance Group' s $3 billion investment expected to become the largest one-off foreign direct investment in Bangladesh.

The officials said as a follow-up of the MoU, both the Indian conglomerates came up with their proposals and discussed with different bodies in Bangladesh government, including top officials of the Power and Energy Ministry.

"After a number of bilateral discussions between Bangladesh and Indian sides, both the firms have agreed on certain issues to proceed on with their investment proposals," Power Cell director general Mohammad Hossain told UNB.

He also said the government has been working actively to facilitate the foreign direct investment (FDI).

source : the daily sun

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