The country has sufficient stock of diesel fuel to meet the demands of the ongoing irrigation season, said Md Shamsur Rahman, chairman of Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC).
He made the statement at a press conference on Wednesday at his office in the capital following media reports highlighting diesel shortage across the country.
Shamsur Rahman said, "BPC has oil stock for as many as 13 days and it will increase with regular import. In February, the corporation will import 5.20 lakh tonne of diesel in 16 vessels."
As per the National Energy Policy-2004, the BPC is supposed to stock fuel oil for 60 days though.
Besides, another large vessel with a load of 1.30 lakh tonne oil will be on standby for 40 days in the deep-sea near Kutubdia Island, said the BPC chief.
Earlier, there were allegations against state-owned three oil distributing companies that they were not providing oil to the Pac point dealer in Dinajpur, Rajshahi, Jamalpur, Tangail, Barishal and Patuakhali districts.
And some depots were charging additional Tk4000-5000 on each truck from the dealers.
The BPC chairman said, "During last year's irrigation season, the distributing company used to sell 14,000 tonnes of diesel in a single day. But from January 2-26, in eleven days, the average sale was 25,000 tonne per day."
"We've seen some minor shortage because of this high demand but it is not that severe," Shamsur said.
He also said that the BPC has asked local administrations to find out who are demanding additional charges from the dealers, and who are behind spreading rumour of diesel shortage.
In 2018, a total of 43 lakh tonnes of diesels fueled the irrigation pumps across the country. And this year, BPC assumes that the demand could increase to 46 lakh tonnes.
Under three distributing and marketing companies, BPC has 24 oil storage depots across the country.
After importing fuels from the Middle East, BPC transports them in these depots through small lightering tankers and oil bullet tankers, especially in the northern part of the country.
But it takes three-four days to deliver the fuel from Chattogram to Baghabari of Rajshahi due to substandard road-transport system.