Bangladesh is reportedly set to strike a long-term deal with Qatar to import (LNG) to meet the rising domestic demand.
According to official sources at Energy Division and Petrobangla, the negotiation was completed last week during the visit of a high-powered Qatari delegation to Dhaka which agreed on a sales and purchase agreement (SPA).
"We hope, we can sign the deal with Qatar within this month," Md Quamruzzaman, managing director of Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL), told UNB.
RPGCL, a subsidiary of the state-owned Petrobangla, has been entrusted with the responsibility to import and supply of LNG, LPG and CNG in the country.
Qatar's second largest LNG producer RasGas Company will supply LNG to Bangladesh. The RasGas manages and operates seven LNG trains, two sales gas production facilities, two helium plants as well as a long-term charter fleet of 27 LNG tankers.
According to the sources, Bangladesh will sign a 15-year contract with Qatar to import LNG on a floating price liked with the oil price in international market.
The core basis of the deal is that the LNG price will go up and down with the fluctuation of prices petroleum oil on the international market. "The price will be fixed under formula agreed by both sides during the negotiation," RPGCL chief noted.
Officials said the imported LNG will cost about Tk 13 per cubic metre on average at the consumer level after meeting re-gasification and other charges and duties. Currently, the government is distributing gas to various consumers at different prices.
Of this, the price for CNG station is the highest Tk 40 per cubic metre (cm), and lowest Tk 3.16 per cm, while household consumers are getting gas at Tk 11.20 per cm, commercial consumers at Tk 17.04 per cm and industry at Tk 7.76 per cm.
Earlier, Bangladesh signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Qatar about seven years ago to import LNG. But the business deal was not signed so far for lack of re-gasifacation facilities.
After a long exercise of negotiation process over the last six years, the government finally awarded a contract to a private operator to set up an LNG terminal with floating storage re-gasification unit (FSRU) at Moheshkhali Island of Cox`s Bazar.