The government is now working towards setting up a 3,600-megawatt power plant based on liquefied natural gas (LNG) at Payra of Patuakhali.
The power plant, having three units of 1200MW each, was initially expected go into operation by December 2020.
“We are working to complete it as early as we can, but it will not be possible within the stipulated time,” said Deputy Project Director Muhammad Saifuddin Ahsan.
Work on the LNG-based plant is going slowly as North West Power Generation Company Ltd (NWPGCL) is now mainly engaged in constructing country’s first biggest coal-fired power plant at the same place, Saifuddin added.
The NWPGCL, a public power generation company, and German company Siemens AG are jointly implementing the project at a cost of $2.80 billion.
To speed up the project, a steering group was formed with the joint representation from the NWPGCL and Siemens.
So far, they completed land acquisition and land development work, according to NWPGCL sources.
Later, LNG concept study and feasibility study on power plant part have been completed by Australian engineering company Worley Parsons and UK-based company Mott MacDonald Limited respectively.
The power plant will be built on 100 acres of land beside the Payra 1,320MW Thermal Power Plant.
On November 5, 2017, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the NWPGCL and Siemens.
In September 2018, an initial Joint Development Agreement was inked between these two companies.
A land-based LNG terminal will be built at Payra for supplying fuel for this power plant and other proposed industries.
A total of 12 global firms and their joint ventures are now vying to bag the contract to build the country’s first land-based LNG terminal, which will handle 7.5 million tonnes of LNG per year.
Of the 12 firms, four are from Japan, two from Bangladesh, and one each from the Netherlands, France, Qatar, Hong Kong, Korea and India.
Presently, two LNG terminals, having floating, storage, regasification units (FSRUs), with a capacity of 3.75 million tonnes per year each are operating at Moheshkhali.
They are regasifying around 550 million cubic feet of LNG per day (mmcfd), which is a little more than half of their total capacity of 1,000mmcfd.