Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (Berc) will conduct a four-day public hearing from March 11 on proposals placed by different entities for hiking gas prices.
According to sources at the energy watchdog, the commission has already published a notice to its website inviting interested parties to participate in the open hearing.
It has asked the interested groups or individuals to apply by March 4 to take part in the public hearing.
“We’ve put the notice in our official website to make all aware of the public hearing,” a deputy director of the Berc told UNB.
He informed that the hearing will continue for four consecutive days and each day will have two sessions where the gas transmission and distribution companies, including their mother body Petrobangla, will place their respective proposals for public debate.
The energy watchdog has convened the public hearing as per the Berc Act 2003 in response to the appeals of the Petrobangla and its subordinate bodies for raising gas prices for different consumer groups.
Official sources said the gas transmission and distribution companies have proposed nearly doubling the average tariff to Tk 12.19 per cubic metre from Tk 7.35.
Berc officials said the hearing will begin with the presentation from state-owned Petrobangla on March 11 and it will conclude with the submission of proposal by Pashchimanchol Gas Company Ltd (PGCL) on March 14.
The companies that made their appeals to the Berc are Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Ltd (TGTDCL), Bakhrabad Gas Distribution Company Ltd (BGDCL), Jalalabad Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Ltd (JGTDCL), Karnaphuli Gas Distribution Company Ltd (KGDCL) and the PGCL.
Berc officials said all the companies made their appeals maintaining uniformity in their demands for gas price hike for different consumer groups.
They proposed raising the price for household single and double burners to Tk 1,000 and Tk 1,200 per month respectively from existing Tk 750 and Tk 800 per month respectively.
The similar proposals were placed before the Berc last year. But after the hearing, the appeals were rejected by the watchdog.
Many believed that the government had backtracked from the decision to raise the gas prices before the 11th general election.