Move to speed up implementation of Moheshkhali-Matarbari projects

Shamim Jahangir

20 March, 2019 12:00 AM printer

The government is devising plans for a speedy implementation of the Moheshkhali-Matarbari integrated infrastructure development initiative as a ‘fast track’ project.

A meeting will be held tomorrow at the PMO with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair to discuss the implementation of the Tk 1.5-trillion project, the country’s largest infrastructure project.

Under the project, the government will build deep seaport on 1,225 acres of land at Matarbari, four units of coal-fired power projects having capacity to produce 2400MW power and an LNG-based power plant with facilities at Matarbari.

Besides, eight coal-fired and LNG-based power plants with capacity to generate 8,320MW electricity will be set up on 5,579 acres of land at Moheskkhali.

The government has already allocated Tk 574 crore for acquiring 5,579 acres of land at Moheskhali, but it will require around Tk 83,200 crore more for 8320MW power generation. 

Coal Power Generation Company Bangladesh Ltd has already completed 22.20 percent physical progress for implementing 1200MW ultra super critical power plant project at Matarbari.

“We are satisfied with the physical progress of the power plant so far,” Coal Power Generation Company Bangladesh Ltd Managing Director Golam Kibria told daily sun yesterday.        

He said the company will need one year more to implement the LNG-based power plant and construction of facilities is underway.

The Prime Minister’s Office has already asked the Chittagong Port Authority (CPA) for acquiring 931 acres of land by its own fund. The rest 294 acres of land will be acquired through JICA finance for implementing the deep seaport at Matarbari, according to sources.

At the seaport, the government plans to create facilities to load and unload 1,12,000 metric tonnes of coal facilities to feed 12 mega coal-fired power plants.

Besides, the 1000mmcfd LNG supply facilities will be created at Matarbari through installation of land- based terminal, officials said.

The CPA conducts initial works to implement the deep seaport.

In future, the government plans to extend the Moheskhali deep seaport to Sonadia island and requested JICA to conduct the feasibility study on it, reliable sources said.

The government is planning to extend the Cox’s Bazar railway link to Matarbari to facilitate smooth carriage of construction materials and machinery to Moheskhali-Matarbari integrated development project.

“We are now conducting a feasibility study for the construction of Matarbari rail link from Chakaria,” Rail Secretary Mofazzel Hossain earlier told daily sun.

The proposed rail link will facilitate carriage of capital machinery between Cox’s Bazar and Chattogram, he said.

The rail secretary also said the Dohazari-Ramu-Cox’s Bazar rail route project is going on in full swing.

The government has allocated Tk 900 crore for the project in the current fiscal under the Annual Development Program (ADP).

Of the project, a total of 102 kilometres New Duel Gauge rail route will be constructed along with nine station buildings, platforms and sheds.

Besides, an Iconic station building in Cox’s Bazar will be built on the oceanic seashore.

The Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) had formed a high-profile body to coordinate the development works in the area.

Chief Coordinator for SDGs Affairs at PMO Abul Kalam Azad led the 14-member committee comprising the secretaries of PMO, Power Division, Energy Division, Water Ministry, Road Transport and Highways Division, Shipping Ministry, Industries Ministry, Commerce Ministry and Local Government Division and Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) executive chairman among others.

The committee has been tasked with monitoring the overall infrastructural development in Moheshkhali-Matarbari area.

JICA is conducting a comprehensive transport plan between Dhaka and Moheshkhali-Matarbari area for transportation of goods to and from the proposed deep seaport there.

The areas will be connected with Dhaka through rail, road and inland waterways to facilitate smooth transportation.

The PMO has already formed a separate committee led by a senior secretary to Legislative and Parliament Division for preparing a legal framework and guideline on the use of Matarbari land.