State Minister for Power Nasrul Hamid on Thursday said that political outlook is big a factor in cross border power trading and regional cooperation.
He observed that the cross border power trade has taken a successful shape by the initiative of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
“Political commitment is important to move ahead with the regional cooperation”, he said while addressing a seminar on cross border power trade at Institute of Engineers, Bangladesh, in the city.
With IEB leader Tamij Uddin in the chair, the seminar was also addressed by Power secretary Dr. Ahmad Kaikaus, PDB chairman Khaled Mahmood and IEB acting chairman Nuruzzaman.
Bangladesh is now importing 640 MW of electricity from India and also planning to increase this import by another 500 MW under cross border power trade.
Nasrul Hamid said Bangladesh is now also working on setting up power plant in Nepal and Bhutan and import of electricity from the two neighbouring countries.
He urged the power sector officials to prepare their mindsets to deal with cross border trade in power sector.
South Asia is still far behind than others in utilising sub-regional cooperation in the area of trade and investment, he said.
Nasrul Hamid mentioned that the power sector needs $82 billion investment in next five years of which assurance has been received $22 billion investment.
“Now, we have to create alternative sources of fund beside the public investment”, he said.
Dr. Ahmad Kaikaus said Rural Electrification Board is now giving over 400,000 connections every month.