Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) said natural gas tariff would not be hiked now as Petrobangla could not import liquified natural gas (LNG) as planned.
The energy regulator announced its decision at a press conference at its office on Tuesday.BERC Chairman Monowar Islam, its members Md Abdul Aziz Khan, Rahman Murshed, Mahmudul Huq Bhuiyan and Md Mizanur Rahman were also present at the press conference.
“We’ve decided not to hike natural gas tariff as Petrobangla could not import 1000mmcfd of LNG as planned until placing the tariff hike proposal,” the BERC chairman told the reporters.
He said NBR’s decision to withdraw supplementary duty and VAT on LNG import also made them decide not to raise the gas tariff.
NBR waived Tk 7,300 crore (73 billion) in supplementary duty and VAT on LNG import through issuing an SRO on September 18, 2018.
“The gas distribution companies will require Tk 3,100 crore to minimise their current loss on LNG import and for supplying the imported gas on subsidised tariff,” the BERC Monowar said.
He also expressed hope that the government will subsidise the loss.In replay to a question, the BERC chairman said they took the decision based on the BERC Act, not based on political influence or in view of the upcoming national election.
The existing of the natural gas tariff is Tk 7.17 per cubic meter but the distribution companies would have required additional Tk 1.46 per cubic meter if the NBR hadn’t waived the SD and VAT, he added.
BERC member Abdul Aziz Khan said BERC has re-structured some systematic faults including system loss in gas supply.