The Rampal Thermal Power Plant in Khulna will go for generating electricity in October this year as 80% of its infrastructural development has already been completed, project officials said on Friday.
Besides, the first shipment of coal for the power plant from Indonesia has already arrived at Mongla Port, paving the way for electricity production this year, said the power plant's Deputy General Manager Anwarul Azim.
He also said "The first unit of this plant under the Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company Limited (Bifpcl) will add electricity to the national grid from October if all are okay. Besides, the 2nd unit will add electricity to the national grid in February 2023."
DGM Anwarul Azim said, "The Bangladesh flag-bearer "MV Akij Heritage" carrying 55,000 tonnes of coal arrived at Chattogram port from Indonesia. From there, three lighter vessels ferried 18,650 tonnes of coal to the terminal of the power plant and they started unloading it on Thursday afternoon."
"From now on, coal will be supplied to the plant on a regular basis. It will be operated experimentally from this month," he said.
At first, Bangladesh signed a contract to import 3 lakh tonnes of coal from Indonesia for the power plant.
Chairman of Mongla Port Authority, Rear Admiral Mohammad Musa said, "The arrival of ships carrying new products at Mongla port remains normal amid the turbulent situation of the world economy. The ship, carrying 55,000 tonnes of coal for Rampal power plant, arrived at Mongla port on Friday."
The income of this port will increase many times thanks to continuous use of Mongla Port for unloading coal from the power plant, he hoped.
Khulna City Corporation Mayor Talukder Abdul Khalek, who was present during formal unloading of coal at the plant, said, "This thermal power plant will be able to meet the electricity demand of the country. Besides, once the power plant is completed, it will help progress this region economically."
In order to meet the growing electricity demand of the country, the government took an initiative to construct a coal-fired power plant in Khulna's Rampal upazila. To this end, Bangladesh and India signed an agreement in January 2010.
Bharat Heavy Electrical Limited (BHEL), an Indian state-owned company, has been constructing the main infrastructure of the plant since 2012.
After completion of two units of the plant, it will hopefully produce a total of 1,320 MW of electricity in its two units (660 megawatts in each).