Parliamentary standing committee chairman on power and energy Md Tajul Islam MP on Sunday remarked that development of the country's industrial sector is being hampered for gas crisis.
"We’ve improved a lot in power sector and energy sector, but we must admit it that the flourishing industrial sector has got stalled just because of gas crisis," he told a seminar organised by the Energy Ministry at Petrobangla Auditorium, UNB reports.
Prime Minister's Energy Advisor Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid and Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission chairman AR Khan also spoke at the seminar marking the National Energy Security Day.
The Energy Ministry observes August 9 every year as the National Energy Security Day since 2010 to commemorate the pragmatic decisions made by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman by taking over gas fields from foreign companies.
Tajul Islam said there are many educated and skilled young entrepreneurs waiting with their talents to set up industries. "But they can't utilise their talents and efficiency only for lack of support of energy."
He said the government must put in place a pragmatic solution to the crisis for the sake of fulfilling the target of becoming a middle-income country by 2021.
"We've been successful in increasing power production. Different segments of energy sector also made success and contributed to economic development. But it also must be admitted that such pace in crisis resolution is not enough to meet the demand of a growing economy," he said.
The standing committee chief urged the government to take more steps to enhance gas production.
Responding to the remarks of Tajul Islam, PM's Energy Advisor Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi said the government is aware of the concerns over gas crisis and also has taken up initiatives to address the problem.
State Minister Nasrul Hamid said the government has planned to restructure the state-owned exploration company Bapex to strengthen its activities, aiming to increase the gas production.
He said he does not believe that the country's gas reserve will be exhausted within 10-15 years once innovative works are undertaken.
"If we take innovative initiatives and make more discoveries in gas sector, gas will not exhaust soon. We're hopeful of new gas discoveries. Still, there are so many places across the country where we're yet to reach for gas exploration," he said.
He underscored the need for alternative use of gas through its replacement by LPG for households and other fuels for CNG-run motor vehicles.
Acting energy secretary Nazimuddin Chowdhury, Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation chairman AK Badruddoza, Petrobangla chairman Ishtiak Ahmed, Geological Survey of Bangladesh (GSB) director generation Nihal uddin also spoke at the seminar, while Petrobangla director Quamruzzaman made a keynote presentation on the country's energy security.