Amid the growing energy crisis, Bapex has discovered a new gas reserve of around 700 billion cubic feet near Shahbazpur in Bhola, raising the overall gas reserve of the area to around one trillion cubic feet.
"There’s good news for the country as Bapex has found initially estimated some 700 billion cubic feet of gas reserve in Bhola. If the new gas reserve is added to the previous ones, the total gas reserve of that area will reach around one trillion cubic feet," said Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam.
The Cabinet Secretary said this while briefing reporters at Bangladesh Secretariat on Monday after the Cabinet meeting held at the Prime Minister's Office with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.
He said the news on the new gas reserve was revealed at the cabinet meeting.
Shafiul Alam said the Cabinet was also apprised about the annual report on various ministries and divisions for the fiscal year 2016-2017.
Revealing the major highlights of the report, he said the country's export earnings for the FY17 totalled $34.8468 billion, which was 1.72 percent higher than the previous fiscal year while the tax collection for the 16-17 fiscal year was Tk 1,86,273 crore, up 7.75 percent than the previous year’s.
During the last fiscal year, the Cabinet Secretary said, some 8,94,054 Bangladeshi workers went abroad with a 30.61 percent rise from the previous year, but inward remittance inflow fell 14.48 percent in the FY17 compared to the previous fiscal.
The GDP growth reached 7.24 percent in FY17, up from 7.11 percent in FY16, while the per capita income in the last fiscal year increased to $1602 from previous year’s $1465.
In the last fiscal year, the real production of wheat, corn, potatoes, onion, vegetables, meat, eggs, milk, fish, and coal increased compared to the FY16.
Besides, the highest demand and production of power increased by 443 MW in the last fiscal year compared to the previous year (FY16) with the setting up of some 44,497 kilometers of new distribution lines, 543 circuit kilometers new transmission lines.
Apart from this, some 36.93 kilometers of the existing railway track has been renovated while some 45.28 kilometers new track has been set up during the last fiscal year in addition to the construction of some 47 new rail bridges, 10 stations, renovation of 22 bridges, and introduction of 6 new trains.
Asked about Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan’s visit to Myanmar, Shafiul Alam said the Rohingya problem should have to be resolved through diplomatic efforts and dialogue.
He said that work is going on to finalise the repatriation method of the Rohingya nationals to Myanmar and it would start once the two sides agree on the issues of the framework.