Ctg bulk consumers ‘not getting gas despite LNG supply’
UNB: Although the imported LNG supply to Chattagram began on August 18, the region is still experiencing ‘huge gas shortage as the bulk consumers there are not getting gas’ to run their facilities.
According to official sources, the situation is unlikely to improve much until the second consignment of LNG reaches the country in the second week of September and the constraints in the pipeline are removed.
Officials at Karnaphuli Gas Distribution Company Ltd (KGDCL), the distribution entity of Chattagram region, said they are getting about 100 (million cubic feet per day) mmcfd gas from imported LNG to feed 512,431 consumers under the company’s command areas.
“We’re now receiving 100 mmcfd of gas to increase our supply to about 220 against a demand of 500 mmcfd.
But, this is not enough as our largest bulk consumers are not getting gas,” Engineer Khaiz Ahmed Mozumder, Managing Director of KGDCL, told UNB.
He noted that there are three largest consumers — Raojan Power Plant, Shikalbaha Power Plant and Chittagong Urea Fertiliser Factory Ltd (CUFL) — the combined gas demand of which is over 200 mmcfd.
After the start of the LNG supply, just one unit of Shikalbaha Power Plant is getting 30-36 mmcfd of gas and it still needs 47 mmcfd of gas to run its remaining two units, he said adding the Raojan Power Plant’s requirement is 90 mmcfd while CUFL’s requirement is 50 mmcfd.
These three facilities still need 180 mmcfd of gas to meet their requirements, Mazumder said.
He also informed that some 1,300 applications remained pending with KGDCL for new gas connections.
The KGDCL chief executive informed that although the imported LNG is being supplied to Chattagram, gas from its existing supply line is being diverted to Dhaka and other regions as part of the government’s supply rationalisation plan.
Admitting the gas supply shortfall in Chattagram region, M Quamruzzaman, managing director of State-owned Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL) hoped that the arrival of the second LNG consignment will further improve the supply situation both in the port city and other regions, including capital Dhaka.
He said the second LNG consignment will reach the country on September 9 and raise the LNG supply capacity to 500 mmcfd.
“But it’s not clear whether the Gas Transmission Company Limited (GTCL) would be able to receive more than 300 mmcfd due to its pipeline constraints,” he said.
Sources at the GTCL said they are installing a new pipeline between Anwara and Fouzdarhat which needs further time to get ready for operation.
State-owned RPGCL has been importing LNG from Qatar while state-owned GTCL is entrusted with the responsibility of transmitting the gas to the national grid.
The maiden consignment of imported LNG reached the country on April 24 through the FSRU-based ship. But due to some leakages and technical glitches, the RPGCL could not supply the imported gas to the network over the last three months.
The leakages and technical problems were fixed recently and FSRU is getting ready for supplying the gas to the network.
RPGCL imported the LNG from Qatar and moved for re-gasifying it through the FSRU, set up at Moheshkhali by US-based Excelerate Energy.